Love the Words 2023

Love the Words 2023: Dream

‘Love the Words’ is an annual celebration of the magic and power of words, and is part of International Dylan Thomas Day which takes place on May 14 each year.

For our latest contest, Love the Words invites people of any age, anywhere in the world, to send a poem of up to 40 lines on the theme of ‘dream’.

This year’s theme is inspired by the 70th anniversary of the first performance of Under Milk Wood, the seminal ‘play for voices’ which offers up the dreams and innermost thoughts of a number of Dylan’s most beloved characters.

As a result, your poem could be about a dream, or a daydream; it could address dreams that are personal desires, or more general wishes for the world at large; it could show us the dreams and thoughts of a famous person, living or historical, or of an animal, object, place, or plant. It’s up to you how you explore the theme, as long as ‘dreams’ are touched on in some way. Be as imaginative, observational, realistic, or surreal, as you like!

The competition will be judged by the creative director of Dylan Day, Hannah Ellis, who is Dylan’s grand-daughter, and former Dylan Day coordinator and poet, Mab Jones.

The competition opens on Monday March 6 and closes on Saturday May 6 at midnight (GMT), and it is open to anyone, any age, anywhere in the world.

You may enter as many times as you like. We would ask you to put your poem in the body of an email – not in an attachment – and also to put ‘Love the Words’ as the subject of your email. We’d like to know your full name, the country you are writing from, and your age (we will only publish the ages of winners who are 21 or under). Please send your poem(s) to:

Winners will be announced on the Discover Dylan Thomas website on Dylan Day, 14 May. Winners will receive print books and ebooks from Parthian Books and Infinity Books UK.

Please note that copyright of the poems remains with the authors, although by taking part you grant us permission to share your poems in our social media, on the Discover Dylan Thomas website, and in our publicity relating to Dylan Day and the competition.

As always, we encourage you to share your poetry on social media, either as an image of your entire poem, the whole poem, or an extract from it. Simply use the hashtags #LovetheWords and #DylanDay, and we will reshare as many as we can in the lead up to the celebration.

“I think, that if I touched the earth,

It would crumble;

It is so sad and beautiful,

So tremulously like a dream.”

– from Dylan Thomas, Clown in the Moon


We’re delighted to announce the winners of this year’s Love the Words international poetry competition. Congratulations, everyone!