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WRBH 2nd Annual Poetry Contest

Celebrate National Poetry Month in April with WRBH's POETRY CONTEST






It’s No Joke…

April 1st marks the beginning of National Poetry Month, and what better way to celebrate than by writing some! WRBH welcomes you to enter our 2nd Annual Poetry Competition! Submit your original poem by 11:59 PM CST on Monday, April 25th. Poems can be submitted by either entering them into the form below or by emailing your poem to listen@wrbh.org .

All ages are welcome to contribute and there are no limitations on length or content, but everyone who enters must “like” WRBH Reading Radio on Facebook to be eligibleThe winners will get a chance to record their poems at WRBH’s Station, meet the staff and have their poems played on the air and uploaded on our SoundCloud page. 

The Judges

This year, the contest will be judged by three members of the New Orleans poetry community: 

  • Bill Lavender 
    • Bill Lavender is a poet, novelist, editor and teacher living in New Orleans. He founded Lavender Ink, a small press devoted mainly to poetry, in 1995, and he founded Diálogos, an imprint devoted to cross-cultural literatures (mostly in translation) in 2011. His poems, stories and essays have appeared in dozens of print and web journals and anthologies, with theoretical writings appearing in Contemporary Literature and Poetics Today, among others. His most recent book of poetry, the ground-breaking verse memoir, Memory Wing, dubbed by Rodger Kamentetz “a contemporary autobiographical masterpiece,” was published by Black Widow in 2011. His novel, Q, a neo-picaresque view of a world in constant economic crisis, appeared from Trembling Pillow in 2013.
  • Cassie Pruyn 
    • Cassie Pruyn is a New Orleans writer originally hailing from Portland, Maine. Her poems, reviews, and blog posts can be found in AGNI Online, ENTROPY, The Normal School, 32 Poems, The Los Angeles Review, The Adroit Journal, NolaVie, and others. She is currently working on her first poetry collection, and also on a book-length narrative history of Bayou St. John.
  • Jerika Marchan 
    • Jerika Marchan is a graduate of Louisiana State University and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she was a recipient of the 2014 Friedman Fellowship. Her work can be found in Smoking Glue Gun and The Bat City Review and is forthcoming in the new journal agápē and Loose Change. Most recently, she was a semi-finalist for the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize. Her debut full-length book SWOLE is forthcoming from Futurepoem in 2016.

If you have any questions or concerns please email david@wrbh.org. To skip down to the official rules, click here.

The Who, What, When, etc.

Who can enter?

This contest is open to anyone of any age living in the Greater New Orleans area whether published or not, and regardless of experience.

Are there categories?

There are two categories: Youth (up to 14 years old) and Adult (15+ years old).

When can I submit?

Submissions will be accepted from Friday, April 1, 2016 until 11:59 PM CST on Monday, April 25, 2016.

What can I win?

A winner, two runner-ups and an honorary mention will be awarded in each the Youth category and Adult category. Prizes may include but are not limited to: In-studio recording of winner reading poem for use on air; tour of WRBH studios; WRBH bumper sticker; WRBH poster; selection of book from WRBH library. Winners will be announced the last week of April.

What should my poem be about?

Anything you want! It’s open to whatever your imagination dreams up. Here’s a look at our winners from last year: https://www.wrbh.org/wrbh-blog-poetry-contest-winners-meet-and-perform/





Entry is free.

 No purchase is necessary to be eligible for contest.

To Enter:

This Contest is divided into two categories, Youth (up to 14 years old) and Adult (15+ years old). The submission period begins at 12:01 AM CST on Friday, April 1, 2016 and ends at 11:59 PM CST on Monday, April 25, 2016 (“Submission Period”). Each poem must be in English and submitted through the form on the WRBH Poetry Contest page.

Submission Requirements:

Submitted Poems must be original to entrant and must not have previously been published. By entering, entrants represent and warrant that the Poem is original to entrant, and that it does not infringe any party’s intellectual property rights, invade any third party’s privacy, and does not defame any third party or otherwise give rise to any legal claim by any third party. The Poem must be appropriate for publication in a print newspaper or online publication. The Poem must not depict any obscene, provocative or otherwise inappropriate content. Any Poem that is determined by WRBH in its sole discretion at any time during the Contest to violate the submission requirements or these Official Rules, or to otherwise be unsuitable, offensive or in poor taste, may be rejected and the accompanying entry disqualified. WRBH retains sole discretion as to whether any Poem satisfies the submission requirements and its decisions are final. 


This contest is open to all people living in the Greater New Orleans area whether published or not, and regardless of experience. All poems received by WRBH, for all categories, are entered into the WRBH Poetry Contest. Writer may submit as many entries as desired. Writer must select his or her age appropriate category for submission(s) to be eligible. Entrant must also “like” WRBH on Facebook (if they have a Facebook profile). Contest submission ends April 25, 2016.


Judges are members of the New Orleans poetry community. Entries are judged on the basis of originality, creativity, imagination, characterization and artistic quality. All judges’ decisions are final.


A winner and a runner-up will be awarded in each category. Prizes may include but are not limited to: In-studio recording of poem by winner for use on air; tour of WRBH studios; WRBH bumper sticker; WRBH Poster; selection of book from WRBH library. Winners will be announced April 29, 2016.


All poems remain the property of the writer. However, by submitting a poem for this contest, entrant agrees to allow use of their poem and name, voice, photograph, likeness, and any information provided on entry form in any medium of communication, including but not limited to print, Internet, radio and/or television and for any purpose, including advertising, promotional or other purposes, by WRBH and its licensees and affiliates, without additional compensation, permission, or notification. WRBH is under no obligation to publish every contest entry and can disqualify an entry at any time.

Winner Selection and Notification:

On or about Friday, April 29, 2016, a panel of judges from WRBH will announce category winners. WRBH will make all final decisions in any and all issues related to this Contest, and its decisions are final and binding in all respects. WRBH will attempt to contact potential winners by phone and/or email. A winner will be disqualified and an alternate winner selected from among the remaining finalists based on the same criteria as above if: (a) winner cannot be contacted/does not respond within 24 hours of first attempt to contact potential winner; (b) winner does not fulfill the eligibility requirements; (c) winner does not adhere to the Official Rules; and/or (d) if the prize notification is returned as undeliverable, refused, or declined.

Prize Restrictions:

Winners are solely responsible for any applicable federal, state and local taxes in connection with the prize. All expenses not specifically provided for herein are the responsibility of the prize winners. Prize substitutions are not allowed, and prizes are not transferable. Only WRBH may elect, at its discretion, to substitute a prize of equal value because of lack of availability. Prizes are awarded “as is” with no warranty or guarantee, either express or implied by WRBH.


By entering this Contest, each entrant agrees to release, waive and hold harmless WRBH, and their affiliates, subsidiaries, and advertising and promotional agencies, and all of their officers, directors, shareholders, employees and agents from any and all injuries, claims, damages, losses, costs, or expenses of any kind (including without limitation attorney’s fees) resulting from accessing the Contest website; submitting an entry or otherwise participating in any aspect of the Contest; the receipt, ownership or use of any prize awarded; preparing for, participating in or traveling to and/or from any prize-related activity, or; any printing, typographical or other error in these Official Rules or the announcement of offering of any prize. Neither the failure of WRBH to insist upon or enforce strict performance of any provision of these Official Rules or the failure, delay or omission by WRBH in exercising any right with respect to any term of these Official Rules, will be construed as a waiver or relinquishment to any extent of WRBH’s right to assert or rely upon any such provision or right in that or any other instance. WRBH also reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to modify these Official Rules for clarification purposes at any time without notice.

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