Submissions are currently closed.
The submissions window for Issue 2 will open later in 2021.
What we’re looking for
We’re looking for poems that in some way respond to the idea of poem as vessel.
What can a poem hold? What might slip through it or rest outside it? How might a poem create, become or embody the topos/topography of a container? These are just some questions we hope to explore both formally and thematically across each issue of Vessel. Each guest editor brings a unique perspective to these issues.
We particularly welcome work by People of Colour, LGBTQ+ people, people with disabilities, carers, working class people, and women.
We are based in the UK, but we welcome submissions from all over the world.
The magazine will be a black and white, A5-sized, DIY-printed document, and we are seeking work that will shine in this format.
Our tastes are broad, and each guest editor brings their own concerns and approach. There is no preferred style or theme for each issue – just show us your interpretation of the idea of poem as vessel.
What to send us
Send up to 3 A5 pages of work in a Word document (.doc or .docx) to vesselpoetry [at] gmail [dot] com. Font size should be 12 point in Arial, Times New Roman, Calibri, or similar standard font. Please start a new page and include a title for each piece.
We will also accept up to 3 images suitable for black and white DIY-style reproduction in .jpeg format. If the images accompany particular poems, please send a PDF to illustrate the order/combination you would wish us to retain. Images must be titled.
If yours is a mixed submission (poems and images), please send no more than 3 pages of work in total.
Poems must be largely (but not wholly) in English. We accept translations providing you have the permission of the copyright holder to translate and disseminate the work.
We consider that work shared on personal blogs constitutes published material. Please send us your best new work that won’t have been seen before.
If you are concerned about the formatting of your poem/s, please send as a PDF with your submission.
Please include a short biography (max 100 words) written in the third person along with relevant links to social media/etc.
We accept simultaneous submissions. Please notify us immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere. We will always double check that work is still available for publication before we print.
A covering note including the names of the submitted poems and saying a friendly hello is always appreciated.
What happens next?
As each submitted poem/image is received, it will be assigned a reference number to allow us to read submissions as anonymously as possible (we are a very small team). If you have indicated that the work is to be read as a sequence, it will receive a single reference number.
Each editor will read half of the submissions to arrive at a combined shortlist of 30-40 submissions. We will then decide the final selection in tandem. We have space for around 20 pages of poems/images per issue.
Selected contributors will then be notified and asked to confirm that the work is still available for publication in Vessel. Once confirmed, we will notify unsuccessful submissions, and commence production on the print journal.
Please keep an eye on the News page for the latest info.
Terms & conditions
We regret that at present we are unable to pay contributors, although each contributor will receive a print copy of the magazine and a discount on further copies.
Submissions that fall outside our submissions window or don’t meet our guidelines will not be read. Please note that we do not accept .docx format – if you’re sending a Word document, please save as .doc.
We’re unable to offer individualised feedback on work that doesn’t make it into the final selection. We do, however, always endeavour to let poets know the outcome of their submission. The editors’ decision is final.
Vessel is run on a voluntary basis and sales of the magazine go towards covering production costs. Sales info will follow upon release of issue 1 in the autumn.