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ONLY poems listed here or in the current printed anthology are eligible for the 2014-2015 Poetry Out Loud competition. More information here.

The Coming of the Plague

By Weldon Kees

September was when it began.
Locusts dying in the fields; our dogs
Silent, moving like shadows on a wall; . . .

Concord Hymn

By Ralph Waldo Emerson

By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
   Their flag to April’s breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood . . .

The Consent

By Howard Nemerov

Late in November, on a single night
Not even near to freezing, the ginkgo trees
That stand along the walk drop all their leaves . . .

Contraction

By Ravi Shankar

Honest self-scrutiny too easily mutinies,
    mutates into false memories
Which find language a receptive host, . . .

Cool Tombs

By Carl Sandburg

When Abraham Lincoln was shoveled into the tombs, he forgot the copperheads and the assassin ... in the dust, in the cool tombs.

And Ulysses Grant lost all thought of con men and Wall Street, cash and collateral turned ashes ... in the dust, in the cool tombs. . . .

Corn Maze

By David Barber

Here is where
You can get nowhere
Faster than ever . . .

Coy Mistress

By Annie Finch

Sir, I am not a bird of prey:
a Lady does not seize the day.
I trust that brief Time will unfold . . .

The Craftsman

By Marcus B. Christian

I ply with all the cunning of my art This little thing, and with consummate care
I fashion it—so that when I depart,
Those who come after me shall find it fair . . .

The Cricket and the Grasshopper

By Dan Beachy-Quick

The senseless leaf   in the fevered hand
Grows hot, near blood-heat, but never grows
Green. Weeks ago the dove’s last cooing strain . . .

The Cross of Snow

By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

In the long, sleepless watches of the night,
   A gentle face — the face of one long dead —
   Looks at me from the wall, where round its head . . .