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They’re great poets, and now they know it

The Palaszczuk Government has congratulated the winners of the poetry awards that were announced last night at the opening of the 2018 Queensland Poetry Festival.

Minister for the Arts Leeanne Enoch said four Queenslanders took out prizes in the Arts Queensland poetry awards.

“Congratulations to Brisbane-based poet Anna Jacobson who was named the 2018 Arts Queensland Thomas Shapcott Poetry Prize with her manuscript, I know I may not escape unscathed.

“Congratulations also to Brisbane-based writer Zenobia Frost, who won the 2018 Arts Queensland Val Vallis Award for her poem Reality on Demand, and to Anisa Nandaula who won the Arts Queensland XYZ Prize for Innovation in Spoken Word.

“The winner of the Oodgeroo Noonuccal Indigenous Poetry Prize – which is the only open-age Indigenous poetry prize in Australia for an unpublished poem – was Brenda Saunders.

“This award was named in honour of Oodgeroo Noonuccal, the first Aboriginal Australian to publish a book of verse, the prize has been named after receiving permission from Oodgeroo’s family and in close consultation with Quandamooka Festival.

“And lastly, congratulations to Philip Neilson for winning the Philip Bacon Ekphrasis Award, for his poem, The Art of Flying.”

Ms Enoch said the Palaszczuk Government was proud to provide funding for the awards.

“The Queensland Government has supported the poetry awards, the Poet in Residence, and the Queensland Poetry Festival for more than a decade,” Ms Enoch said.

“The Government supports three poetry awards and the Arts Queensland Poet-in-Residence with annual funding of $35,000, along with funding of $140,000 for the 2018 Queensland Poetry Festival through Arts Queensland’s Organisations Fund 2017 – 2020 and the Queensland Arts Showcase Program.

“It is so important to recognise outstanding new work that contributes to Australia’s contemporary literary canon.

“I hope these awards will encourage the winners to keep writing and will inspire readers to seek out these award-winning works.”

Queensland Poetry Festival is being held until 26 August: