25 Lines and Fewer

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ONLY poems listed here or in the current printed anthology are eligible for the 2013-2014 Poetry Out Loud competition. More information here.

Momma Said

By Calvin Forbes

The slice I ate I want it back
Those crumbs I swept up
I’d like my share again . . .

The moon now rises to her absolute rule

By Henry David Thoreau

The moon now rises to her absolute rule,
And the husbandman and hunter
Acknowledge her for their mistress. . . .

More Lies

By Karin Gottshall

Sometimes I say I’m going to meet my sister at the café—
even though I have no sister—just because it’s such
a beautiful thing to say. I’ve always thought so, ever since . . .

The Mothering Blackness

By Maya Angelou

She came home running
       back to the mothering blackness   
       deep in the smothering blackness . . .

The Mower

By Philip Larkin

The mower stalled, twice; kneeling, I found   
A hedgehog jammed up against the blades,   
Killed. It had been in the long grass. . . .

Mowing

By Robert Frost

There was never a sound beside the wood but one,
And that was my long scythe whispering to the ground.
What was it it whispered? I knew not well myself; . . .

Mrs. Adam

By Kathleen Norris

Wake up,
you’ll need your wits about you.
This is not a dream, . . .

Mrs. Kessler

By Edgar Lee Masters

Mr. Kessler, you know, was in the army,
And he drew six dollars a month as a pension,
And stood on the corner talking politics, . . .

Much Madness is divinest Sense - (620)

By Emily Dickinson

Much Madness is divinest Sense -
To a discerning Eye -
Much Sense - the starkest Madness - . . .

mulberry fields

By Lucille Clifton

they thought the field was wasting
and so they gathered the marker rocks and stones and
piled them into a barn    they say that the rocks were shaped . . .

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