Find Poems & Poets

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

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By May Sarton

Absorbed in planting bulbs, that work of hope,
I was startled by a loud human voice,
“Do go on working while I talk. Don’t stop!” ...

By David Ferry

It is an afternoon toward the end of August:
Autumnal weather, cool following on,
And riding in, after the heat of summer, ...

By Annie Finch

Sir, I am not a bird of prey:
a Lady does not seize the day.
I trust that brief Time will unfold...

By Marcus B. Christian

I ply with all the cunning of my artThis little thing, and with consummate care
I fashion it—so that when I depart,
Those who come after me shall find it fair...

By Marilyn Hacker

Instead of a cup of tea, instead of a milk-
silk whelk of a cup, of a cup of nearly six
o'clock teatime, cup of a stumbling block, ...

By Dan Beachy-Quick

The senseless leaf   in the fevered hand
Grows hot, near blood-heat, but never grows
Green. Weeks ago the dove’s last cooing strain...

By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

In the long, sleepless watches of the night,
   A gentle face — the face of one long dead —
   Looks at me from the wall, where round its head ...

By Yusef Komunyakaa

The city at 3 a.m. is an ungodly mask
the approaching day hides behind
& from, the coyote nosing forth,...

By Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Sunset and evening star,
      And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar, ...

By Pat Mora

They think she lives alone
on the edge of town in a two-room house
where she moved when her husband died...

What People are Saying

"I was surprised that I was able to select poems that are so out of my usual spoken word preference. The Poetry Out Loud website has hundreds of poems that I have never seen before, and the fact that I found 3 and was able to make it so far with them is amazing to me. I guess I learned that stepping outside of the box is okay!"
Annabelle Emuze
2015 IL POL Champion