A Bridge to Japan Poetry Broadside Contest

A Bridge to Japan: A Poetry Broadside Contest Presented by the Portsmouth NH Poet Laureate Program

We are pleased to offer a digital poetry broadside contest. Final judging will be performed by poet and translator Patrick Donnelly. Winning entries will be awarded cash prizes and will be gifted to Portsmouth’s sister city, Nichinan, Japan.

A poetry broadside is a sheet of paper with a poem printed on the front side. It may include an illustration in any media, and signatures by the poet and artist. Some broadsides include a small-print colophon, a brief statement with information about the making of the broadside, place of origin, the maker(s), purpose and date of publication, and the typeface(s) and kind of paper used. Some broadsides, with or without illustration, are printed on fine paper as artworks. For the purposes of this contest, the broadside can be designed and printed on a computer, by letterpress, or as a hand-made monoprint.


The contest is open to all who submit a broadside that meets the following rules:

  • Only original work written in English or English and Japanese that has not been published elsewhere. Simultaneous submissions are fine.
  • Broadsides may be created by one person or two people working together.
  • Please limit yourself to involvement in two entries.
  • There are two categories of entries: Adult and Youth (age 17 and younger) If an adult and youth collaborate the broadside will be judged in the adult category.
  • Broadsides may be created in any way as long as these criteria are met:

o One dimensional work no larger than 11 x 17 inches.
o Includes a poem (any form) of no more than 30 lines.
o Shows a Japanese influence in any way (art &/or poem).
o Must not incorporate any copyright protected work.

  • If more than 50 entries are received a first round of judging will be conducted by a committee of 3 PPLP board members.
  • Decisions of contest judge Patrick Donnelly will be final. His bio can be found here.
  • One winner and two honorable mentions will be chosen in each age category.
  • Both first place winners will receive $100 cash prizes and all four honorable mentions will receive $25 cash prizes.
  • In exchange for the cash prizes the winners agree to relinquish ownership of their original work to be sent to Nichinan, Japan as gifts of friendship. Shipping to be borne by the PPLP.
  • Images of all entries will be permanently displayed in a digital gallery attached to and maintained by the PPLP website.
  • If a winning entry was submitted (individually or as a collaborative work) by a current PPLP board member s/he will be ineligible for a cash prize.
  • Questions: Contact Tammi Truax, Portsmouth Poet Laureate at T4tu@comcast.net


  1. Reading period is Jan. 1-31. Work must be submitted by midnight Jan. 31, 2021.
  2. Judging will take place in February 2021.
  3. Winners will be announced in March 2021.
  4. Originals of winning entries will be presented to the city of Nichinan and the online gallery will be shared in April of 2021.

Submit work: sized at 11×17 inches (landscape or portrait) at 300dpi to PPLPcontest@gmail.com with a brief bio in the body of the email.

Broadside Contest PDF available here.

Keep in Touch with us!

Keep in Touch with us!

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news, events, and other updates. We typically send 1-2 emails per month.

You have Successfully Subscribed!