2011 Creatrix Prize Winners


Congratulations to all winners of the 2011 Creatrix Poetry/Haiku Prizes from Issue 11 to Issue 14.

Thank you to John Daniel and Peter Jeffrey for judging the poetry prize and Rose van Son, Meryl Manoy, Amanda Joy and Gary De Piazzi for judging the Haiku Prize
Thank you to all of the poets who contributed to Creatrix in issues 11 to 14 and to Sunline Press, Fremantle Press, Crow Books and Tantamount Press for donating the prizes.


Creatrix Poetry Prize Winners

First Prize – Sally Clarke

Yearning for Constantinople

Second Prize – Mags Webster


Commended – Jan Napier

Sour Note

Commended – Chris Palazzolo



Creatrix Haiku Prize Winners

First Prize – Kevin Gillam

sky’s canvas
scrawl of cirrus

Second Prize – Liana Joy Christensen

seed pearls on
naked skin
sea bath at dawn

Commended – John Bird

heron sanctuary
the red kangaroo’s

Commended – Judy Paice

the sea morning mist
curves around fence posts
soft green


First Prize

Yearning for Constantinople

when you came back from Stambul
‘city of the world’s desire’

like a sultan returning to his harem
you brought oriental gifts.

one silver Bedouin bracelet
heavy shackle for a slender ankle.

silver-hearted filigree brooch
turquoise scarab trapped in its web.

the red copper platter, intricately inscribed
inscrutable Arabic calligraphy.

two pale alabaster vases
smooth to touch, cool as death.

I remember how you presented the treasures
one-by-one, taking a whole day

held still in their mysterious origins
reliving that cacophonous souk,

how I wished I’d been with you, not left behind

veiled sultana locked in the seraglio.

Sally Clarke

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Second Prize


I want it to end on a day which measures
the hours like an abacus shunting
moments, bead by bead

I want my mind to have packed up
all preoccupations, remaindered the need
for speech, the need for need itself

so if there is pain I can be
beyond it, beyond the hush of syringe
the sweet, metallic, anaesthetic

I imagine time putting a slipknot on me,
choking out the light. I will realise
I have gone only when I stand and move,

see myself for the first time, not a photograph
nor reflection, nor through a self-encrypted lens
but whole and pure and rinsed of doubt, almost a stranger.

Mags Webster

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Sour Note

They’re not coming of course.
She says my music makes her sick.
He says that it makes his ears bleed.
They shout a bit about the cost
laugh    clink glasses.
Jack looks me up and down
the way a dingo stares at a snared rabbit.
‘Get to your room’, mum yells.
I bite my lip on the inside where no one can see.

The key clicks in the lock.
I hug Teddles. Daddy gave him to me.
‘A friend for when I’m gone’, he said.
Daddy always came to watch me.
I miss his scratchy beard    his stinky cigars
his terrible jokes.
Car doors slam    it’s Karaoke night at the pub.
I hide Ted in my violin case    climb out the window.

Rosin stars stick to my fingers    smear my jeans.
I’ve been practicing a new piece down by the creek.
‘The cows don’t care and we can’t hear’, Jack says.
Sometimes in winter my fingers go purple.
The judge tells me, ‘try harder and turn up in clean clothes’.
Never mind    Teddles still loves me.
I hope Daddy heard.

Jan Napier

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A notice to vacate this unit finally sent,
but the membrane of home is already split and starting to peel.
I can feel the tender etiolated corners
to be exposed when we start to pack. I can sense that time
has taken here, eating away at this terminal space
like rust in guttering. Soon we will be vagrants
in vacant rooms, echoes off alien walls.

Too look at us right now you would never guess
we are loosening like poorly glued bathroom tiles
or lifting like cheap parquetry. The imminent dismantling
of our domestic organon has only begun
to shadow our minds. Our routines continue throughout the day
and following days, but we are already ghosts
already translucent. In my mind the shadow will assume
its formless form, for I can now see the chaos of boxes,
random cuboid objects tumbling in disoccupied space.

Chris Palazzolo

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