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 Phillis Wheatley

O thou bright jewel in my aim I strive
To comprehend thee. Thine own words declare
Wisdom is higher than a fool can reach. ...

By Elizabeth Bishop

The art of losing isn’t hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster. ...

By Pablo Neruda

I don’t love you as if you were a rose of salt, topaz,   
or arrow of carnations that propagate fire:   
I love you as one loves certain obscure things,   ...

By William Matthews

How easily happiness begins by   
dicing onions. A lump of sweet butter   
slithers and swirls across the floor   ...


By Thomas Sayers Ellis

Or Oreo, or
worse. Or ordinary.
Or your choice   ...

By Roisin Kelly

I’ll choose for myself next time
who I’ll reach out and take
as mine, in the way...

By Pattiann Rogers

Stellar dust has settled.
It is green underwater now in the leaves
Of the yellow crowfoot. Its vacancies are gathered together ...

By Calvin Forbes

Put my glad rags in a cardboard box—
This old jiggerboo never grew mature.
Is everthing in its place except me? ...

By Rae Armantrout

The very flatnessof portraits
makes for nostalgia
in the connoisseur....

By John Brehm

So sexy to slide under-
neath a river,
to sit inside this...

What People are Saying

"With a $20,000 prize, I never imagined POL being this much fun. The competitions were more about meeting and talking with the other competitors, having a great time and enjoying the poetry. I also never knew I could find so much in myself just from reciting poems."
Elliot Davidson
2015 PA POL Champion