Nominees must have made an outstanding contribution to New Zealand poetry, and be an accomplished and highly regarded poet. They must also be a strong advocate for poetry, and be able to fulfil the public role required of a Poet Laureate, which includes engaging with a wide range of people and inspiring New Zealanders to read and write poetry.The award comes with $80,000 and a tokotoko (carved walking stick): the laurate is expected to be “an advocate and a public presence for poetry, and involved in events which promote the reading and writing of poetry by children and adults alike”, and also to produce a book of poetry. It is what is known in other areas of the arts as a “good gig”.
Previous laureates are Bill Manhire, Hone Tuwhare, Elizabeth Smither, Brian Turner, Jenny Bornholdt, Michele Leggott, Cilla McQueen and Ian Wedde. That leaves quite a few to choose from.
Download the nomination form here: closing date is Monday 15 July.