25 Lines and Fewer

ONLY poems listed here or in the current printed anthology are eligible for the 2018-2019 competition.

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By Carmen Giménez Smith

My heart is bleeding. It bleeds upward and fills
my mouth up with salt. It bleeds because of a city in ruins,
the chair still warm from sister's body,...

By James Wright

Just off the highway to Rochester, Minnesota,
Twilight bounds softly forth on the grass.
And the eyes of those two Indian ponies...

By Simon J. Ortiz

You could drive blind
for those two seconds
and they would be forever....

By Nikki Giovanni

If Black History Month is not
viable then wind does not
carry the seeds and drop them...

By Robinson Jeffers

It is not bad.  Let them play.
Let the guns bark and the bombing-plane
Speak his prodigious blasphemies....

By Lewis Carroll

A boat beneath a sunny sky,
Lingering onward dreamily
In an evening of July —...

By Jeffrey Skinner

You would expect an uncountable number,
Acres and acres of books in rows
Like wheat or gold bullion. Or that the words just...

By James Ephraim McGirt

Born like the pines to sing,
   The harp and song in m’ breast,
Though far and near,...

By Naomi Shihab Nye

Every few minutes, he wants
to march the trail of flattened rye grass
back to the house of muttering...

By Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Break, break, break,
         On thy cold gray stones, O Sea!
And I would that my tongue could utter...

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