Find Poems & Poets


ONLY poems listed here or in the current printed anthology are eligible for the current Poetry Out Loud competition. More information here.


By Rita Dove

What did he do except lie
under a pear tree, wrapped in
a great cloak, and meditate . . .


By Larry Bradley

Learn from the man who spends much of his life speaking
             To the back of your head knowing what it means to follow
. . .

A Barred Owl

By Richard Wilbur

The warping night air having brought the boom
Of an owl’s voice into her darkened room,
We tell the wakened child that all she heard . . .


By Sara Teasdale

Life has loveliness to sell,
All beautiful and splendid things,
Blue waves whitened on a cliff, . . .

Battle-Hymn of the Republic

By Julia Ward Howe

Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord:
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fatal lightning of his terrible swift sword: . . .


By Mark Turcotte

Back when I used to be Indian
I am standing outside the
pool hall with my sister. . . .

'Be Music, Night'

By Kenneth Patchen

Be music, night,
That her sleep may go
Where angels have their pale tall choirs . . .

The Bearer

By Hayden Carruth

Like all his people he felt at home in the forest.
The silence beneath great trees, the dimness there,
The distant high rustling of foliage, the clumps . . .

Beautiful Wreckage

By W.D. Ehrhart

What if I didn’t shoot the old lady
running away from our patrol,
or the old man in the back of the head, . . .

Becoming a Redwood

By Dana Gioia

Stand in a field long enough, and the sounds   
start up again. The crickets, the invisible   
toad who claims that change is possible, . . .