25 Lines and Fewer

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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.

“I think I should have loved you presently”

By Edna St. Vincent Millay

I think I should have loved you presently,
And given in earnest words I flung in jest;
And lifted honest eyes for you to see, . . .

“Oh could I raise the darken’d veil”

By Nathaniel Hawthorne

Oh could I raise the darken’d veil,
Which hides my future life from me,
Could unborn ages slowly sail, . . .

Time does not bring relief; you all have lied”

By Edna St. Vincent Millay

Time does not bring relief; you all have lied   
Who told me time would ease me of my pain!   
I miss him in the weeping of the rain;    . . .

“What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why”

By Edna St. Vincent Millay

What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why,
I have forgotten, and what arms have lain
Under my head till morning; but the rain . . .

Learning to Love America

By Shirley Geok-Lin Lim

because it has no pure products

because the Pacific Ocean sweeps along the coastline . . .

Learning to swim

By Bob Hicok

At forty-eight, to be given water,
which is most of the world, given life
in water, which is most of me, given ease, . . .

Leda and the Swan

By William Butler Yeats

A sudden blow: the great wings beating still
Above the staggering girl, her thighs caressed
By the dark webs, her nape caught in his bill, . . .

Let Evening Come

By Jane Kenyon

Let the light of late afternoon
shine through chinks in the barn, moving   
up the bales as the sun moves down. . . .

Let It Be Forgotten

By Sara Teasdale

Let it be forgotten, as a flower is forgotten,
Forgotten as a fire that once was singing gold,
Let it be forgotten for ever and ever, . . .

Let the Light Enter

By Frances Ellen Watkins Harper

“Light! more light! the shadows deepen,
        And my life is ebbing low,
Throw the windows widely open: . . .