25 Lines and Fewer

ONLY poems listed here or in the current printed anthology are eligible for the 2016-2017 competition.

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By Robert Francis

When others run to windows or out of doors
To catch the sunset whole, he is content
With any segment anywhere he sits....

By Christopher Marlowe

Come live with me and be my love,
And we will all the pleasures prove,
That Valleys, groves, hills, and fields, ...

By Charles Simic

They explained to me the bloody bandages
On the floor in the maternity ward in Rochester, N.Y.,   
Cured the backache I acquired bowing to my old master,   ...

By Anne Killigrew

Remember when you love, from that same hour
Your peace you put into your lover’s power;
From that same hour from him you laws receive, ...

By Cathy Smith Bowers

I collect them now, it seems. Like
sea-shells or old
thimbles. One for ...

By Stuart Dybek

Fire ran horrified
from its ashes.
...

By Campbell McGrath

Today is a trumpet to set the hounds baying.
The past is a fox the hunters are flaying.
Nothing unspoken goes without saying....

By Carl Sandburg

Lincoln?
He was a mystery in smoke and flags
Saying yes to the smoke, yes to the flags, ...

By Carmen Giménez Smith

Once when I was harmless
and didn’t know any better,
...

By D. H. Lawrence

Softly, in the dusk, a woman is singing to me;
Taking me back down the vista of years, till I see
A child sitting under the piano, in the boom of the tingling strings ...

What People are Saying

"I do Poetry Out Loud because the everyday me is very shy and easily stumbles over words, mangling meaning and botching simple conversations. Yet, when I recite poetry it is an opportunity for me to become someone else––an embodiment of the poem. Slowly, step by step, I think Poetry Out Loud is helping me to become a braver, more confident person, even if I still tremble when I get on stage."
Rose Horowitz
2016 ME POL Champion