Pre-20th Century Poems

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

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By George Moses Horton

I feel myself in need
   Of the inspiring strains of ancient lore,
My heart to lift, my empty mind to feed,...

By Ralph Waldo Emerson

Give all to love;
Obey thy heart;
Friends, kindred, days, ...

By James Shirley

The glories of our blood and state
     Are shadows, not substantial things;
There is no armour against Fate; ...

By Gerard Manley Hopkins

The world is charged with the grandeur of God.
    It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
    It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil...

By John Donne

I wonder, by my troth, what thou and I
Did, till we loved? Were we not weaned till then?
But sucked on country pleasures, childishly? ...

By Elizabeth Barrett Browning

I tell you, hopeless grief is passionless;
That only men incredulous of despair,
Half-taught in anguish, through the midnight air ...

What People are Saying

"I was initially very surprised by how unique each performer can make a poem. Even if twenty different kids are reciting the same poem, they will each make it their own and interpret it the way that they want to. "
Vera Escaja-Heiss
2018 VT Champ