2011 Global Anthology

The Montreal Prize Global Poetry Anthology

We hope you’ll enjoy reading this unique approach to global poetry, representing the rhythms, flavours, preoccupations and tastes of a diverse, international collection of poets writing in English.

Proceeds from sales of the anthology directly support our efforts to crowdfund a major literary award.

Please visit our publisher’s website to purchase a copy if you’re interested in global poetry and in supporting the Montreal Prize. Our portion of the proceeds will go towards building our prize fund. Individual contributions of this kind are an important part of building a grassroots, crowdfunded arts organization. Many thanks again to everyone who supported us in our first year by entering their poems for the prize!

Here’s the blurb from the back of the anthology:

“The poems in the 2011 Global Poetry Anthology are new, previously unpublished works from around the world, selected in a “blind” process by a team of editors from Australia, Guyana, India, Ireland, Jamaica, Malawi, Nigeria, the U.K., the U.S., and Canada. Signal Editions, the poetry series at Véhicule Press, is pleased to offer what may be the first opportunity most readers have had to read an anthology of global poetry representing the rhythms, flavours, preoccupations and tastes of a diverse, international collection of poets writing in English.”

You can also purchase a copy from the usual online booksellers.

Cover Design: David Drummond


The 2011 Anthology

One important purpose of the Montreal Prize is the publication of its 50 finalists in an annual English-language Global Poetry Anthology.

There are many national anthologies of contemporary poetry published every year, but there is no annual global anthology gathering the world’s many voices in one place.

Our hope is that our annual global poetry anthology will become an important cultural artefact in its own right, reflecting the work of our individual editors to select the best poems in the world every year. And as the Editorial Board will change every year, over time many accomplished poets from all over the world will have had a chance to express their unique interests by selecting the poems for each anthology.

To demonstrate our belief in the standalone importance of the anthology, the prize winner will not be identified in its pages.

Our first global poetry anthology will be published in print and in e-formats by Montreal’s Véhicule Press in late 2011. For more information on Véhicule Press, please see their website at http://www.vehiculepress.com. We’re hoping everyone interested in poetry will get a copy of the 2011 Global Poetry Anthology and help support our nonprofit global poetry project. The anthology represents new, unpublished work from poets who come from all over the world, selected by a global team of editors. As a result, it may, to some degree, be looked at as a snapshot of subjects that poets around the world were grappling with in 2011. We do not yet know what “global poetry” is, but we’re excited to discover it, deliver it, and encourage poetry lovers everywhere to engage in discussions about it.

The 2011 Shortlist

Thursday, November 17, 2011 | Below is the list of poems included in the 2011 Global Poetry Anthology. It represents the ‘Shortlist’ for the 2011 Montreal Prize. We will announce the prize winner in December.

Over the course of the next month, starting on Friday November 18th, we’ll be posting two poems per day from the Shortlist, for one day only. We hope you’ll enjoy reading them.

And finally, below the list of poems, we’re including a section with photos and bios of the poets whose work was selected for the 2011 Global Poetry Anthology. We’ll add the photo and bio for each poet on the same day when we post his or her poem. Where possible, we’ll also include a link to an MP3 recording of each poem in the poet’s own voice.

The final selections were hard for our editors to make, given the high quality of the work received, from over 59 different countries. Thanks again to everyone who understood our community-funding approach and who supported our nonprofit global poetry project in its first year by participating directly in the 2011 Montreal International Poetry Prize!

After Cancer
by Leslie Timmins
Night Thoughts from Somewhere Past High Noon
by Iain Higgins
Aluminum Beds
by Russell Thornton
The Old Man and the Beanstalk
by Alina Wilson
Among Schoolchildren
by Spencer Reece
Old Men on a Bench
by Adil Jussawalla
At Swim Three Words
by Gary Geddes
On Finding a Copy of “Pigeon” in the Hospital Bookstore
by Susan Glickman
Atocha 2004
by David Bunn
by Maria Borys
Breakfast at the Friar Arms
by Peter Richardson
The Pardon
by Ellen Wehle
Children’s Stories
by Philip Nugent
The Silence
by C.K. Stead
The Contortionist Speaks of Dislocation
by Rachel Lindley
Spring in Cow Bay, Nova Scotia
by Barbara Myers
Delenda est Carthago
by Ron Pretty
The Stiltwalkers
by John Wall Barger
The Earth Moves and Bright
by Linda Rogers
Sun Flower Sutra
by Stuart Jay Silverman
Earthquake Light
by Robert Wrigley
Tamarind Tree
by Patricia Young
An Embarrassment of Riches
by Phillip Crymble
Themba is Dead
by Emeka Okereke
Four Trees
by Donald Givans
There You Are
by Mitchell Albert
The Garbage Truck Trashed the Sunflower
by Jeff Steudel
They Disappeared in the Night
by Rafi Aaron
The Grasshoppers’ Silence
by Linda Rogers
Three Monkeys on a Dusty Bureau
by Shelagh McNally
The Infinite Library
by Jillian Pattinson
by Bronwyn Lovell
The Kingfisher
by Mark Tredinnick
by Suparna Ghosh
Late Breaking News
by Gary Geddes
Walking Underwater
by Mark Tredinnick
Leaving the Island
by Talya Rubin
by Edith Speers
by David Mortimer
What Gathers
by Heid E. Erdrich
Lise Meitner Leaves Berlin
by Victor Tapner
When the Muses can’t be bothered
by Barbara Hobbie
Morel-Floored Forest
by Carolyn Hoople Creed
The White Bicycle
by Paula Bohince
by Polyxeni Angelis
Yiu Ming Cheung
by Ashley Chow
The Need for These Things to Be Said
by Margaret McCarthy

*Please note that while our editors did select fifty poems for the Shortlist, it turned out in the end that a couple of poems were ineligible due to prior publication. It’s a very important part of our project that all the poems in our annual anthology are new and current, and for us, being published online is no different from being published in print.


The 2011 Global Poetry Anthology | List of Poets

Please note: If an MP3 won’t play in your internet browser, you can right-click on on the link to download the file

Adil Jussawalla was born in Bombay in 1940, and went to school there. He is the author of two books of poems, Land’s End (1962) and Missing Person (1976). His third book of poems, Trying to Say Goodbye, will be published by Almost Island Books this year.
For more information, visit Poetry International Web.


Alina Wilson will be graduating from Canada’s University of Victoria this year with a double major in both Writing and in Germanics. After that, she intends to spend some time in Germany, working as an English-teaching assistant.
Click here for the MP3 of Alina’s poem The Old Man and the Beanstalk.


Ashley Chow grew up in New Hampshire. Her poems have been published or are forthcoming in New York Quarterly, Poetry International, and Crab Creek Review. She is a recipient of a 2011 Robert Pinsky Global Fellowship to Timor-Leste.
Click here for the MP3 of Ashley’s poem Yiu Ming Cheung.


Barbara Hobbie is a freelance community journalist concentrating on not-for-profit organizations. She resides in the former East Germany. Her poems have appeared in Avant Garde, The Granite Review, Chicago Journalism Review and The Anthology of New England Writers.
Click here for the MP3 of Barbara’s poem When The Muses can’t be bothered.


Barbara Myers was born and bred in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, and now lives in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. She is a contributing editor to Arc Poetry Magazine. Her first full collection, Slide (Signature Editions) came out in 2009. Whistle For Jellyfish (Bookland Press), of which she is one of the co-authors, has just been released.
Click here for the MP3 of Barbara’s poem Spring in Cow Bay, Nova Scotia.


Bronwyn Lovell is a poet and spoken word performer in Melbourne, Australia, where her poetry has been featured at several events, arts and writing festivals, as well as on local television and radio. She has a writing residency at Kinfolk Cafe, and she is a workshop facilitator for the Centre for Poetics and Justice. www.bronwynlovell.com.
Click here for the MP3 of Bronwyn’s poem Tsunami.


Carolyn Hoople Creed teaches Creative Writing at Canada’s Brandon University. Her writing has been published coast-to-coast in Canada, from Prism on the west coast to Undertow in the east.
Click here for the MP3 of Carolyn’s poem Morel-Floored Forest.


C.K. Stead is a writer from New Zealand. He has published a number of novels and books of literary criticism, as well as poetry and short story collections. He was awarded a CBE in 1985 for services to New Zealand literature, and elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1995. His Collected Poems 1951-2006 was published in 2008 by Auckland University Press in New Zealand, and by Carcanet in the UK.


David Bunn was born in 1946. For the last three years, with wildly inadequate skills, he has been translating the French poet René Char’s challenging post-war collection Fureur et Mystère.
Click here for the MP3 of David’s poem Atocha 2004.


David Mortimer is working on a third collection of poems to follow Red in the Morning (Bookends 2005) and Fine Rain Straight Down (Friendly Street New Poets Eight Wakefield 2003). Mortimer lives in Adelaide. For further information please visit the South Australian Writers’ Centre website. Click here for the MP3 of David’s poem Leopold.


Donald Givans was born in 1990 in Omagh, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland. He recently graduated with a First Class Honours Degree in English from Queen’s University Belfast and is currently reading for a Masters at Queen’s in Modern Poetry.
Click here for the MP3 of Donald’s poem Four Trees.


Edith Speers grew up in Vancouver, Canada. In 1974 she emigrated to Australia where she established herself as a widely published and prize-winning poet with two collections of verse.



Ellen Wehle‘s poems have appeared in Canada, Europe, the U.S. and Australia. Her first collection of poems is called The Ocean Liner’s Wake (Shearsman, 2009). Wehle writes poetry book reviews, “a labor of love,” she says, “to help bring exciting new poets to a larger audience.”


Emeka Okereke is a poet from Nigeria. He is the Artistic Director of Invisible Borders Trans African Photography Initiative.



Gary Geddes has won a dozen national and international literary awards, including the Commonwealth Poetry Prize (Americas Region), the Lieutenant Governor’s award for Literary Excellence (in the Canadian province of British Columbia) and the Gabriela Mistral Prize from the government of Chile, awarded simultaneously to Vaclav Havel, Octavio Paz, Ernesto Cardenal, Rafael Alberti and Mario Benedetti.


Heid E. Erdrich is an independent scholar, curator, playwright, and founding publisher of Wiigwaas Press, which specializes in Ojibwe-language publications. Her third poetry collection, National Monuments, won the 2009 Minnesota Book Award. Cell Traffic: New and Selected Poems is forthcoming in 2012 from University of Arizona Press.
Click here for the MP3 of Heid’s poem What Gathers.
photo credit: Cheryl Walsh Bellville


Iain Higgins was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. His books include Then Again (poems), The Invention of Poetry (a translation of Polish poet Adam Czerniawski’s selected poems), The Book of John Mandeville (a translation of a fictional medieval travel book about the East), and Writing East: The “Travels” of Sir John Mandeville (an academic study).
Click here for the MP3 of Iain’s poem Night Thoughts from Somewhere Past High Noon.


Jeff Steudel‘s work has appeared in several Canadian literary magazines, including The Fiddlehead, CV2 and Prism international. In 2010, he received the Ralf Gustafson Poetry Prize. In 2011, his poetry was selected as a finalist in the CBC Literary Awards. He lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
Click here for the MP3 of Jeff’s poem The Garbage Truck Trashed the Sunflower.
photo credit: Susan Steudel


Jillian Pattinson is an Australian writer based in Melbourne. Her poems have been published in the Australian Book Review, Griffith Review, Meanjin, The Best Australian Poems 2007, Motherlode: Australian Women’s Poetry 1986-2008, and others. The working manuscript for Jillian’s first poetry collection, The Infinite Library, won the 2010 Alec Bolton Prize for an unpublished manuscript. In 2010, Jillian’s poem “The Still Point” won the inaugural UTAS Place and Experience Poetry Prize.


John Wall Barger has lived in Halifax, Vancouver, Ottawa, Rome, Prague, Dublin, and Tampere. His first book of poems, Pain-proof Men, came out in 2009 with Palimpsest Press. His next book, Hummingbird, is forthcoming with Palimpsest in spring 2012.
Click here for the MP3 of John’s poem Stiltwalkers.


Leslie Timmins has published poetry and short stories in numerous literary magazines. She has lived in France and Germany and now makes her home with her husband and cat a few short blocks from the sea (the sea, the sea…) in Vancouver, Canada.
Click here for the MP3 of Leslie’s poem After Cancer.


Linda Rogers is a poet from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, and the author, editor and illustrator of several dozen books of poetry, fiction and non-fiction. Currently Rogers is editing an anthology of Victoria painters and poets, while tweaking a novel set in Turkey, where her husband plays New Orleans blues with Sweet Papa Lowdown.
Click here for the MP3 of Linda’s poem The Earth Moves and Bright.
Right-click here to download the MP3 of Linda’s poem The Grasshoppers’ Silence.
photo credit: Kathleen Hay

Margaret McCarthy’s poetry and fiction has been widely published. Her most recent work appears in the online journal Eureka Street. Her first poetry collection is Night Crossing (2010). Margaret teaches professional writing and editing at Victoria University. She lives with her daughter in Melbourne, Australia.
Click here for the MP3 of Margaret’s poem The Need For These Things To Be Said.


Maria Borys was born in Poland and spent her formative years in Mexico. She writes and translates business, academic and literary texts in English, Spanish and Polish. Her work has recently been published in Chilean Poets: A New Anthology (Marick Press, 2010); and Borealis: Antologia Literaria de El Dorado (Verbum Veritas/La cita trunca, 2010).
Click here for the MP3 of Maria’s poem Paradiso.


Mark Tredinnick an award-winning Australian poet, is the author of Fire Diary, The Blue Plateau, The Little Red Writing Book, and eight other works of poetry and prose. Mark lives, writes and teaches along the Wingecarribee River, southwest of Sydney. The Lyrebird (2011) is his most recent book of poems, and a new collection (Body Copy) will appear in 2012.
Click here for the MP3 of Mark’s poem The Kingfisher.
Click here for the MP3 of Mark’s poem Walking Underwater.
photo credit: Vicki Frerer


Mitchell Albert is a London-based book and magazine editor born and raised in Montreal. He is also the editorial director of PEN International. Although he has fielded countless submissions of poetry, essays, short stories, articles and novels, his entry for the Montreal Prize represents the first time he has submitted his own work for a publication or prize.


Patricia Young has published ten collections of poetry. She has won many prizes including two B.C. Book Prizes for Poetry, the Pat Lowther Award for poetry, two National Magazine Awards, the League of Canadian Poets National Poetry Prize, the CBC Literary Award for Poetry, and the Arc Poem of the Year Prize. Her poems have been included in Best Canadian Poetry in English (Tightrope Books) in 2009, 2010 and 2011.
Click here for the MP3 of Patricia’s poem Tamarind Tree.


Paula Bohince is the author of two poetry collections, both from Sarabande Books: Incident at the Edge of Bayonet Woods (2008) and The Children (forthcoming, 2012).
Click here for the MP3 of Paula’s poem The White Bicycle.



Peter Richardson has published three collections of poetry with Véhicule Press in Montreal: A Tinkers’ Picnic (1999); An ABC of Belly Work (2003); and Sympathy for the Couriers (2007) which won the QWF’s A.M. Klein Award for 2008. His work has appeared in Poetry (Chicago), Sonora Review, The Malahat Review, The Rialto and Poetry Ireland Review among others. He lives in Gatineau, Quebec, Canada.


Philip Nugent was born in London, grew up in Wiltshire and Sussex, took a degree at Edinburgh and lived for a while in Greece where he taught English. Nugent was for many years a police officer in North London. Now he lives with his family in East Anglia.
Click here for the MP3 of Philip’s poem Children’s Stories.


Phillip Crymble’s poems have appeared in publications around the world, including Vallum, Arc, The Malahat Review, The Hollins Critic, Michigan Quarterly Review, Poetry Ireland Review, and The New York Quarterly. Crymble now lives in Fredericton, New Brunswick, where he serves as a Poetry Editor for The Fiddlehead. Not Even Laughter (Salmon Poetry, 2012) will be his first full-length collection of poems.
Click here for the MP3 of Phillip’s poem An Embarrassment of Riches.


Polyxeni Angelis was born in Athens, Greece. She emigrated from Greece to America with her family in 1967. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from the University of Minnesota. Writing is her passion. She resides in Minnesota with her son.
Click here for the MP3 of Polyxeni’s poem Mosaic.


Rachel Lindley has had both dramatic and light verse published in the CBC Alberta Anthology, Margie Review, Alsop Review, Light Quarterly, Stitches, and the anthology Kiss and Part. Rachel is currently working on two poetry series: Seven Chakras for a Split Brain and Fair Voices: Songs in Three Rings.
Click here for the MP3 of Rachel’s poem The Contortionist Speaks of Dislocation.


Rafi Aaron‘s book Surviving the Censor—The Unspoken Words of Osip Mandelstam (Seraphim Editions, 2006) won the Jewish Book Award for poetry in 2007. A documentary on Rafi’s poetic works entitled The Sound Traveller, produced by Endless Films, has aired on Bravo TV and Book Television.
Click here for the MP3 of Rafi’s poem They Disappeared in the Night.
photo credit: Ruth Kaplan


Robert Wrigley teaches in the MFA program in creative writing at the University of Idaho. His books include Moon In a Mason Jar (University of Illinois, 1986); What My Father Believed (Illinois, 1991); In the Bank of Beautiful Sins (Penguin, 1995) winner of the San Francisco Poetry Center Book Award; Reign of Snakes (Penguin, 1999), winner of the Kingsley Tufts Award; Lives of the Animals (Penguin, 2003), winner of the Poets’ Prize; Earthly Meditations: New and Selected Poems (Penguin, 2006); and most recently, Beautiful Country (Penguin, 2010). He is the recipient of two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as a fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. Among his other awards are the J. Howard and Barbara M. J. Wood Prize; and six Pushcart Prizes. Click here for the MP3 of Robert’s poem Earthquake Light.


Ron Pretty’s seventh book of poetry, Postcards From the Centre, was published in 2010. Until he retired in 2007 he ran the Poetry Australia Foundation and was Director of Five Islands Press. He taught creative writing at the Universities of Wollongong and Melbourne. He has edited the literary journals SCARP and Blue Dog: Australian Poetry.
Click here for the MP3 of Ron’s poem Delenda est Carthago.


Russell Thornton‘s books are The Fifth Window (Thistledown, 2000), A Tunisian Notebook (Seraphim, 2002), House Built of Rain (Harbour, 2003), and The Human Shore (Harbour, 2006). He won the League of Canadian Poets National Contest in 2000 and The Fiddlehead magazine’s Ralph Gustafson Prize in 2009. His poems have appeared in several anthologies. He now lives in North Vancouver, Canada. See: http://www.Thornton999.blogspot.com/


Shelagh McNally grew up in Ottawa, escaped Ottawa to live in Toronto, escaped Toronto to live in Mexico on a beach and now lives on a tiny island outside of Montreal. She has worked as a journalist and travel writer for the last 23 years.
Click here for the MP3 of Shelagh’s poem Three Monkeys on a Dusty Bureau.


Spencer Reece is an ordained Episcopal priest at Iglesia Catedral del Redentor in Madrid. His first book of poems, The Clerk’s Tale (Houghton Mifflin) won the Bakeless Prize. His poems have appeared in The New Yorker and Poetry. His forthcoming books are The Road to Emmaus and The Little Entrance (Farrar Straus Giroux, 2013).
photo credit: Lawrence Schwartzwald


Stuart Jay Silverman taught college in Alabama and Illinois before retiring to homes in Chicago, IL, and Hot Springs, AR. His The Complete Lost Poems: A Selection is published by Hawk Publishing Group. Some 400 of his poems and translations appear in journals in Canada, the U.S.A., England, and France.


Suparna Ghosh is a poet and painter based in Toronto. Her poems have been featured in various magazines and anthologies. She has exhibited her works in galleries in Toronto, New York, Mumbai and New Delhi. Ghosh’s books are Sandalwood Thoughts and Dots and Crosses. Please visit: suparnaghosh.com.
Click here for the MP3 of Suparna’s poem, Unlimited; and click here to see a painting by Suparna inspired by the poem.


Susan Glickman has published five books of poetry with Véhicule Press, most recently Running in Prospect Cemetery: New & Selected Poems (2004); a sixth, The Smooth Yarrow, is due out in 2012, the same year as her second novel, The Tale-Teller (Cormorant Press). Her first novel, The Violin Lover (2006) won the Canadian Jewish Fiction Award.
Click here for the MP3 of Susan’s poem, On Finding a Copy of Pigeon in the Hospital Bookstore.
photo credit: Nancy Shanoff


Talya Rubin is a Montreal born, Sydney based poet, playwright and performer. Her poetry won the National Canadian Bronwen Wallace award. Her poetry, short stories and non-fiction have been published in Grain, Matrix, Macleans Online and Ascent magazines.
Click here for the MP3 of Talya’s poem, Leaving the Island.


Victor Tapner is a British poet living just outside London. He has won several poetry prizes, including the Academi Cardiff International Competition. His first full-length collection Flatlands (Salt Publishing 2010) has been shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney Centre Prize for Poetry.
Click here for the MP3 of Victor’s poem, Lise Meitner Leaves Berlin.