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 Linda Pastan

It is more onerous
than the rites of beauty
or housework, harder than love....

By Nathaniel Hawthorne

The Ocean has its silent caves,
Deep, quiet, and alone;
Though there be fury on the waves,...

By Arthur O'Shaughnessy

We are the music-makers,
And we are the dreamers of dreams,
Wandering by lone sea-breakers...

By Alexander Pope

Happy the man, whose wish and care
   A few paternal acres bound,
Content to breathe his native air, ...

By Thomas Lux

which regenerate their tails
and also eat only the tails of other electric eels,
presumably smaller, who, in turn, eat ... ...

By May Sarton

As the tide rises, the closed mollusc
Opens a fraction to the ocean's food,
Bathed in its riches. Do not ask...

By Robert Duncan

as if it were a scene made-up by the mind,   
that is not mine, but is a made place,
...

By Emily Brontë

Often rebuked, yet always back returning
    To those first feelings that were born with me,
And leaving busy chase of wealth and learning...

By Lucille Clifton

oh antic God
return to me
my mother in her thirties   ...

By Nathaniel Hawthorne

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

What People are Saying

"I have always loved poetry, but through Poetry Out Loud I have learned a greater respect for all different types of poetry. This competition is so much more than memorizing and reciting a poem; I became very invested in each one of my poems."
Janessa Gould
2017 WI POL Champion