Global Correspondent Report on Israel





Helen Bar-Lev, IL


The Contest Circle


The winners to the Cyclamens and Swords Annual Poetry competition are as follows:

  • First prize: Desmond Kon Zhicheng-Mingdé from Singapore for the poem – Tangential: A Movement in Two Sonnets

  • Second Prize: April Bulmer from Canada for the poem – Emily Baby

  • Third Prize: Kenneth Salzmann from the USA for the poem – The Persistence of Ashes

Very Highly Commended in alphabetical order:

  • Eli Ben Joseph, Israel – Bensonhurst 1940’s

  • Emery Campbell , USA – My ways Byways

  • C.B. Follett , USA – Anna

  • Carol Frith , USA – A Practiced Darkness

  • Donna Langevin, Canada – Helping my mother undress for her shower

  • Ellaraine Lockie, USA – Waiting for Midnight

  • Rochelle Mass, Israel – Jenin & Turkish Delight

Three additional Highly Commended:



Yaakov Azriel is the first prize winner of the Reuben Rose 2011 Poetry Competition for his poem ‘Pardes’.

Second prize was awarded to Judith R. Robinson for her poem ‘I Apologize’

Third prize was awarded to Dina Yehuda for her poem ‘Bombing in Jerusalem ’.

Honorable mentions were awarde to : Yakov Azriel, Johnmichael Simon, Helen Bar-Lev, Zvi A. Sesling, Ricky Rapoport Friesem, David Silverman, Gretti Izak, Thilde Fox, Andrea Moriah, Anne Ranasinghe, Kaila Shabat, Miriam Green and Joanna Chen – all Voices members!

For full details and poems please see the website:



Submissions for the Voices Israel Anthology are accepted until January 31st. 2012 (email or postmark deadline).

Poems will be then be sent to the editorial board, reviewed, selected, and notices sent out to contributors. The anthology will be printed by September 1st or earlier and distributed before the holidays.

Anyone, anywhere, is welcome to submit a maximum of 4 poems to the anthology. Poems should not exceed 40 lines.

Poems should be previously unpublished. However poems that have been included in the monthly Voices Israel Poetry Page attached to the newsletter are acceptable.

Translations of living poets' poems are acceptable as long as the translations have not been previously published.

Please include a list of your poems on a separate cover page with your name, address telephone number and email address and a short bio, not to exceed seven lines. Please attach the cover letter and poems in a single Word or RTF file in 12pt. Times New Roman font, single spaced—one poem per page, with no identifying information on the pages of poems (only in the cover letter).

Judging is anonymous and the poems will be forwarded to the editorial board without names. No revisions of poems will be accepted after submission!

Emails of poems for the Anthology should be addressed to: 

If you have no access whatsoever to email please submit one copy of each poem plus your cover page by regular mail following the above guidelines, to:

Voices Israel Anthology
c/o Johnmichael Simon
P.O.Box 21
Metulla 10292 , Israel

As for myself, I am proud to have won 4th prize in the Margaret Reid Poetry contest for the following poem:


Free Verse

The Path to a Village


A path passed before
never taken never even seen
now beckons

A path once a road
some bits of pavement
remain to remind, that is all

Soil has encroached foliage has narrowed it
decades have upheaved it
potholes and pebbles render walking unsteady

Lupines line this path, purple sentries saluting spring,
red anemones splashed amongst them
in the fields and at the foot of trees, all abloom now
outstretched arms touch flowers on either side

Almond trees, all blossom and fragrance,
not a leaf to intrude on their whiteness
to disturb their fluff, escort us,
dot the mountains surrounding,
bright patches on spring’s green backdrop

Our legs leap, eager for the next scene,
as we meander into yet more wonders;
a butterfly, white as the petals, flutters by

There exists no path more exquisite than this
no trees more beautiful in their blossom
the sun has never been kinder in its mildness
a February Sabbath singled out by the gods

Were we to see no more beauty in our lives,
this would suffice and then another curve,
through the portal of two eucalyptus trees,
a village, deserted, emerges

Stones collapsed, grass around them,
almond trees rising through paneless windows,
roofless structures, collapsed walls,
lupine, almond, anemone, take no notice

Shadows now are long as the sun prepares its descent,
accentuating stairs leading to nowhere
four decades, more, of crumbling stone
elation subsides, sobers; war does this


Helen Bar-Lev, artist, poet

Senior Editor: Cyclamens and Swords Publishing

Secretary: Voices Israel Group of Poets in English

Contributing editor and Gobal Correspondent,
SKETCHBOOK, A Journal for Eastern and Western Short Forms

International Senior Poet Laureate, 2009
Amy Kitchener Foundation










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