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.

Like Rousseau

By Amiri Baraka

She stands beside me, stands away,
the vague indifference
of her dreams. Dreaming, to go on, . . .

Lincoln

By Vachel Lindsay

Would I might rouse the Lincoln in you all,
That which is gendered in the wilderness
From lonely prairies and God’s tenderness. . . .

Lines Written in Early Spring

By William Wordsworth

I heard a thousand blended notes,
While in a grove I sate reclined,
In that sweet mood when pleasant thoughts . . .

Linnaeus in Lapland

By Lorine Niedecker

Nothing worth noting
except an Andromeda
with quadrangular shoots— . . .

Listening

By Jean Valentine

My whole life I was swimming listening
beside the daylight world like a dolphin beside a boat
. . .

Little Father

By Li-Young Lee

I buried my father
in the sky.
Since then, the birds . . .

Little Girl

By Tami Haaland

She’s with Grandma in front
of Grandma’s house, backed
by a willow tree, gladiola and roses. . . .

The Loaf

By Paul Muldoon

When I put my finger to the hole they've cut for a dimmer switch   
in a wall of plaster stiffened with horsehair   
it seems I've scratched a two-hundred-year-old itch    . . .

London

By William Blake

I wander thro' each charter'd street,
Near where the charter'd Thames does flow. 
And mark in every face I meet . . .

Love Armed

By Aphra Behn

Love in Fantastic Triumph sat,
Whilst Bleeding Hearts around him flowed,
For whom Fresh pains he did Create, . . .