25 Lines and Fewer

ONLY poems listed here or in the current printed anthology are eligible for the 2017-2018 competition.

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By Victor Hernández Cruz

Behold and soak like a sponge.   
I have discovered that the island of Puerto Rico   
is the ears of Saru-Saru, a poet reputed to have lived   ...

By Joshua Mehigan

On the crowded hill bordering the mill,
across the shallow stream, nearer than they seem,
they wait and will be waiting....

By Patricia Smith

Gotta love us brown girls, munching on fat, swinging blue hips,
decked out in shells and splashes, Lawdie, bringing them woo hips.
...

By Camille Rankine

Our stone wall was built by slaves and my bones, my bones
are paid for. We have two
 ...

By Natasha Trethewey

I am four in this photograph, standing   
on a wide strip of Mississippi beach,   
my hands on the flowered hips ...

By JoAnn Balingit

I'd search for Philippines in History class.
The index named one page, moved on to Pierce.
The Making of America marched past...

By Jacob Saenz

Today I became King
of the Court w/out a diamond-
encrusted crown thrust upon ...

By John Donne

Batter my heart, three-person'd God, for you
As yet but knock, breathe, shine, and seek to mend;
That I may rise and stand, o'erthrow me, and bend ...

By John Donne

Death, be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadful, for thou art not so;
For those whom thou think'st thou dost overthrow ...

By Emily Dickinson

“Hope” is the thing with feathers -
That perches in the soul -
And sings the tune without the words -...

What People are Saying

"I learned that I enjoyed poetry - a lot. I'm known as the "football guy" at my school and it surprised me, and others, that poetry would be a big part of my life. Also, I realized that I not bad at performing and public speaking."
Marquavious Moore
2017 TN POL Champion