Ninth annual Sidney Lanier Poetry Competition

Published 8:00 pm Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Deadline for entries April 1

Look around and within all that you see there is a poem waiting to be written. And, within your thoughts, memories, feelings, and dreams, there is a poem in search of a page, one that only you can write. Robert Frost wrote that “Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words.”

So turn to your keyboard and put into words the perspectives, wonderings, imaginings, hopes, disappointments, loves, longings, laughter, sadness, anger, awe, nostalgia, and all the other truths that are uniquely you.

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“Poetry,” writes Plato, “is nearer to truth than history.”

According to poet Emily Dickinson, you will know when you’ve written a poem. “If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry.”

If you’re willing to risk the top of your head and reveal truths about yourself in print, enter the 9th Annual Sidney Lanier Poetry Competition. Entries close on April 1.

First, second, and third place cash awards will be made in adult and student categories from North and South Carolina. You could win with whatever muse may strike, but only if the work is original and not previously published in any form. Submit up to five poems with an entry fee per poem, maximum 40 lines per poem.

The final competition judge is Dr. Kathy Ackerman, author of “Coal River Road.” She will present the awards at the library ceremony on May 6.

Rules, prize details, and entry forms are online at The competition is one of several poetry events during April and May at The Lanier Library, 72 Chestnut St. in Tryon. Call 828-859-9535 for more information, or check the website events calendar.

The competition is made possible by the generous support of the Kirby Endowment Fund at the Polk County Community Foundation.

– article submitted by Vincent Verrecchio