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.

The Delight Song of Tsoai-talee

By N. Scott Momaday

I am a feather on the bright sky
I am the blue horse that runs in the plain
I am the fish that rolls, shining, in the water . . .

Desert

By Josephine Miles

When with the skin you do acknowledge drought,
The dry in the voice, the lightness of feet, the fine
Flake of the heat at every level line; . . .

The Destruction of Sennacherib

By Lord Byron (George Gordon)

The Assyrian came down like the wolf on the fold,
And his cohorts were gleaming in purple and gold;
And the sheen of their spears was like stars on the sea, . . .

Difference

By Stephen Vincent Benét

My mind’s a map. A mad sea-captain drew it   
Under a flowing moon until he knew it;
Winds with brass trumpets, puffy-cheeked as jugs,    . . .

Digging

By Seamus Heaney

Between my finger and my thumb   
The squat pen rests; snug as a gun.
. . .

Dirge in Woods

By George Meredith

A wind sways the pines,
         And below
Not a breath of wild air; . . .

Dirge Without Music

By Edna St. Vincent Millay

I am not resigned to the shutting away of loving hearts in the hard ground.
So it is, and so it will be, for so it has been, time out of mind:
Into the darkness they go, the wise and the lovely.  Crowned . . .

Discrimination

By Kenneth Rexroth

I don’t mind the human race.   
I’ve got pretty used to them   
In these past twenty-five years.    . . .

Disenchantment Bay

By Timothy Murphy

Touch and go. Our Cessna bumped the sand,
       thumped its tundra tires,
       lifted as if on wires, . . .

Do Not!

By Stevie Smith

Do not despair of man, and do not scold him,   
Who are you that you should so lightly hold him?   
Are you not also a man, and in your heart . . .