Fiction Department Collection and State Library Resources

Poetry Contest

Poetry Contest 2017

Maryland poets, achieve fame through this FREE contest! The winning poem will be published in Poet Lore, enlarged for display in a Central Library show window, and honored at a reading at the Central Library. Runners-up may be considered for publication in Poet Lore.

Contest Rules

  • Entrants must be Maryland residents, 18 or older.
  • Paid or volunteer staff of the Enoch Pratt Free Library and Poet Lore and their immediate families are not eligible, nor are previous Pratt Library Poetry Contest first-place winners.
  • Please send only one original poem, on any theme and in any form, for consideration.
  • Your entry must be unpublished, either in print or on the Web, including personal blogs, Facebook, or Twitter. It cannot be currently under review for possible publication.
  • Your entry must not exceed 100 lines.
  • Submit your typed entry as a Microsoft Word attachment by e-mail to or by mail to: Poetry Contest, Fiction Department, Pratt Library, 400 Cathedral St, Baltimore MD 21201-4484.
  • Entries received after March 1, 2017, will be disqualified.
  • Name, address, phone number, and the submitted poem’s title must accompany the entry on a separate page.
  • Confirmation of receipt and comments on your entry will not be provided, nor will your entry be returned to you.
  • For the purpose of display in the Pratt Central Library window, the winning poem may be excerpted.

*The winner will be announced on this page in mid-April.*

Interested in past winners? Check out the poems that won in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016.

Print and share a Poetry Contest flyer (PDF).