The "Write and Burn!" Challenge 2021: Give voice to your soul poetry

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Our Mission

  • To raise standards of English Language communication by creating a competition platform with the use of spoken word as a performance medium

  • To encourage expression of personal identity through spoken word.

  • To develop emerging young talents in Literature


Submissions closed. Thank you for your poems!
Click here to view 2021 finalists (results will be out after 8 August 2021).




Prompt: Submit a poem in response to a Singapore poem found in the library or via

Open to all Singapore-based students (Singapore citizens/Permanent Residents/student pass holders) aged 15-18.

Language: English

Medium: Vocal Poetry

Length: Up to 3 minutes of performance time.

[There is no maximum word/line limit, as long as it may be performed in under 3 minutes, including a short preamble — stating of name and title, a short explanation of what the poem is about.]


Please ensure that you submit both your

(1) Written poem in Word or PDF formats.

(2) Spoken performance of the poem in a short video (no longer than 3 mins) as a unlisted YouTube link.

​Deadline: 16 July 2021, 2359hrs

Submit via this online form.



1. The challenge is open to permanent residents and citizens of Singapore aged 15 to 18 years (as of 31 Dec 2019).


2. Submissions close at midnight (Singapore Time, 23:59)​ on 10 July 2021.


3. All poems must have a title and must not exceed 3 minutes of performance time, including preamble— stating of name and title, short explanation of what the poem is about. ­Send your written entry before midnight (Singapore Time, 23:59)​ on 10 July 2021 via this online form in Word or PDF formats. Your video entry should be submitted as an unlisted Youtube link; detailed instructions can be found in the form.

4. Each participant is encouraged to submit his, her or their best poem, which should preferably be unpublished. If your poem has been published in or submitted to any other platform or publication, please indicate as such in the online form.


5. In case of multiple entries, only the latest entry will be considered.

6. All entries will be evaluated anonymously by the judges.


7. Entries must be submitted via the online form only. No email submissions will be accepted.

8. Entries will not be returned in any form, so keep your own copy.

9. Under no circumstances can changes be made to poems once submitted.

10. Each school/Junior College may only send a maximum of 3 entries.

11. The Organizer / Organization staff will be unable to confirm the content of documents submitted online, so please ensure you send the correct file.

12. The organizers reserve the right to change the judging panel without notice and not to award prizes if, in the judges’ opinion, no entry deserves a prize.


13. The judges’ decision is final and neither the judges nor the Organization / Organizer staff will enter into any correspondence.

14. Poems must be the original work of the entrant.


15.  Written entries should be typed in black at a minimum type size of 12pt. Entries can be double- or single-spaced and must be submitted as Word or PDF files. Video submissions should be audible and clear. The participant’s faces should not be covered, with no additional graphics or images. No subtitles are required for video entries


17. There is no fee required to participate in the challenge.


18. Entries will be assessed based on (i) clarity and expression in performance (ii) precision with language (iii) originality of thought (iv) truthfulness of feeling (v) showmanship.


19. Shortlisted poets from the Qualifying Round will be notified by 20 July 2021. 


20. The copyright of each poem remains with the writer. However, writers of the top poems, by entering the competition, grant Poetry Festival (Singapore) the right to publish and/or broadcast their poems.


1. Can I submit more than one entry? (Individual)

Yes, only the latest entry will be considered.

2. Can I submit more than one entry? (School)

Yes, each school/Junior College may submit a maximum of three (3) entries.

3. Can I submit entries in multiple languages (e.g. one entry under English and one entry under Chinese)?

No, this competition is in English.

4. Do I have to pay any submission fee?

No, there is no submission fee to submit your poem.

5. What is the judging criteria?

Entries will be assessed based on clarity and expression in performance, precision with language, originality, truthfulness of feeling and showmanship.


6. When will I know if I am shortlisted?

We will notify shortlisted applicants by 20 July 2021.

7. Is there an age limit?

Yes, participants should be aged between 15-18 years old as of 31 Dec 2021.


8. Can foreigners participate?

The competition is open to Permanent Residents, and Singapore citizens aged 15-18.


9. What are the submission requirements?
The submission is a spoken word piece of no more than 3 minutes in length, filmed and uploaded on
Youtube with an UNLISTED link.
[Please note: Participants should not be reading from paper / cue cards. Glancing from time to time is

All film submissions are to be accompanied by the poem in written form. This can either be submitted as
a separate .docx or .pdf document. There is no word count or line limit for the poem.

10. Do I have to subtitle my video?

No, you do not have to subtitle your video submission.

WRITE & BURN 2021 Finalists

“Grass Cutting Day”

by Vanathi Pugalendhi


“Carried Stuff”

by David Kim


“The Sad Girl”

by Larisa Lee


by Mansha Singh


“Yes, I live in Singapore.”

by Joy Huang


“September 1963”

by Russell Ng


“Reply to The @ Generation by Umej Singh Bhatia - Brand Singapore by Chen Zixian”

by Zixian, Giselle Chen

“Don't you live in Singapore”

by Yogin Ashta



“bleeding red”

by Yu Tong Lim

“better than before”

by Bethan Loh