Find Poems & Poets

ONLY poems listed here or in the current printed anthology are eligible for the 2015-2016 competition.

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By Edna St. Vincent Millay

What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why,
I have forgotten, and what arms have lain
Under my head till morning; but the rain ...

By Julian Talamantez Brolaski

Why speak of hate, when I do bleed for love?
Not hate, my love, but Love doth bite my tongue
Till I taste stuff that makes my rhyming rough...

By Dick Allen

Stumps. Railroad tracks. Early sicknesses,the blue one, especially.
Your first love rounding a corner,
that snowy minefield....

By Kenneth Rexroth

You were a girl of satin and gauze
Now you are my mountain and waterfall companion.   
Long ago I read those lines of Po Chu I   ...

By Lisel Mueller

When I am asked   
how I began writing poems,   
I talk about the indifference of nature.   ...

By John Keats

When I have fears that I may cease to be
   Before my pen has gleaned my teeming brain,
Before high-pilèd books, in charactery, ...

By Walt Whitman

When I heard the learn’d astronomer,
When the proofs, the figures, were ranged in columns before me,
When I was shown the charts and diagrams, to add, divide, and measure them, ...

By William Butler Yeats

When you are old and grey and full of sleep,
And nodding by the fire, take down this book,
And slowly read, and dream of the soft look ...

By Claude McKay

I will not toy with it nor bend an inch.
Deep in the secret chambers of my heart
I muse my life-long hate, and without flinch ...

By Audre Lorde

There are so many roots to the tree of anger   
that sometimes the branches shatter   
before they bear....

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