Balakbayi: A Poetry Contest for Women in SOCCSKSARGEN

Balakbayi: A Poetry Contest for Women in SOCCSKSARGEN

To continue its goal of promoting the rich and diverse literature of Region XII, SOX Writers Group—in partnership with Cotabato Literary Journal and Aklat Alamid—is launching the Balakbayi Poetry Contest, its first literary competition this 2018.

“Balakbayi” is a blending of the Binisaya words “balak” and “babayi,” which means “poem” and “woman” respectively. The Filipino word “lakbay,” which means “journey,” is also found in the middle of the word. This contest, therefore, celebrates the heart of women’s poetry: a long-standing odyssey that transcends language, gender, and other social constructs.

The following are the guidelines of the contest:


• Only Filipino female writers who are born, residing, or studying/have lived or studied in SOCCSKSARGEN may join the contest.

• There is no specific theme for the contest, but the poem must be original and unpublished.

• Multiple entries are allowed.

• The poem must be in English, Filipino, Hiligaynon, or Binisaya.

• All rights to the literary works belong to the writers.


• The poem must be in a Word file with a filename formatted as Balakbayi, [Surname], [Title of Work]. For example: Balakbayi, Cabugay, A Night in Kabacan.

• The following details should be included in the body of the email: complete name, contact number, address in SOCCSKSARGEN, and a 100 to 150-word bio-note.

• Entries shouldbe sent at on or before 15 March 2018 at 12 PM


• The finalists will be decided by a set of judges. A veteran poet will then determine the ranking of the finalists.

• The winner will receive P3,000.00 and two poetry books, the second placer P1,250.00 and a poetry book, and the third P750.00 and a poetry book. The other finalists will also get consolation prizes.

• The poems of the finalists will be published in the Cotabato Literary Journal.