Shoko Festival shortlists 10 poets

HARARE - Experinced spoken word artists Batsirai Chigama, Tinashe Tafirenyika and Vokal Da Poet are among 10 poets who have been shortlisted by Shoko Festival to compete for the right to be published on the Poetry International (Holland) website.

The other selected poets are Zaza Muchemwa, Aerosol, Dikson, Conarth Macheka, Philip Ngomashi, Gwinyai Runyowa, and Panashe Madziva.

The 10 poets, selected by Shoko Festival in partnership with Magamba Network and Poetry International Zimbabwe, are set to take part in Magamba Network’s spoken word event called Word Garden at the Book Café on Wednesday.

Shoko Festival spokesperson Tafadzwa Sharaunga told the Daily News yesterday that the selected poets fulfilled very rigorous criteria.

“The poems were judged on their freshness, wit, insight, imagery, alliteration,   

assonance, rhyme, rhythm, metaphor amongst other poetic devices,” he said.

“The competition was open to entry to an online audience on the Shoko Festival Facebook page (ShokoFestival) and twitter (@shokofestival). The judges then made a shortlist of the top poems from dozens of poems received.”

Wednesday’s event at the Book Café, to be adjudicated by a high-powered panel of judges that include publisher Irene Staunton, comedian-cum-poet Comrade Fatso and internationally-acclaimed poet Chirikure Chirikure, will be the final stage of the competition.

The overall winning poem/performance will be awarded $150 while poems that will be selected for publication on Poetry International (Holland) website will earn $50.

The poems that will make it onto the Poetry International website will also be released in an audio format.

Shoko, Zimbabwe’s fastest growing international festival, will explode to life in Harare from September 25 to 28.

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