The 2017 judges, poet Ali Cobby Eckermann and Overland poetry editor Toby Fitch, have finished blind judging the competition and, after deliberation, have selected a shortlist of nine poems.
The problem with illness is that it robs you of pleasure. Young people are supposed to live in the moment, take risks, be spontaneous. But life in a hospital is a boring and cruel simulacra of life, with the minutiae of your body ticking like a machine being the best and only thing to focus on. In other words, you become self-obsessed, but not with gaining pleasure, more in avoiding pain.