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Third Annual Joseph Warren McPherson Memorial Poetry Contest


The Memorial Poetry Contest is to honor the life and work of Joseph W. McPherson (1948-2019) who loved poetry, especially its usefulness in revealing the true, the good and the beautiful.

The Brookewood School and Avalon School are pleased to announce the Third Annual Joseph Warren McPherson Memorial Poetry Contest. The contest is open to students enrolled in grades 9–12 in public, private, or home schools in Washington, DC, and in Montgomery County and Prince Georges County, MD. 1st place winners will receive $1000, 2nd place $750, 3rd place $500, and 7 runners-up will receive $100.

Students may submit one or two original poems, each with a maximum of 25 lines, by March 17, 2023. Ten finalists will recite their poems from memory at the competition on April 22, 2023. (Two alternates will be named as well.) Judges will consider both the quality of the poem itself and the skill of the recitation in determining competition winners; recitations allow for an embodiment of the poem but do not treat it as dramatic monologue.

While Mr. McPherson loved the sonnet, poems for this competition may be in any fixed or shaping form, including free verse. If you submit to this competition a poem that has been submitted or accepted for publication or contests elsewhere, you must disclose this information at the time of submission. Students must submit their poems below by Friday, March 17, 2023. Finalists will be notified by email by April 3, 2023. Recitation competition for finalists on Saturday, April 22, 2022. Students can submit their poetry at https://tinyurl.com/nhf8cpwr

If you have any questions email The Brookewood School and Avalon School are pleased to announce the Third Annual Joseph Warren McPherson Memorial Poetry Contest. The contest is open to students enrolled in grades 9–12 in public, private, or home schools in Washington, DC, and in Montgomery County and Prince Georges County, MD. 1st place winners will receive $1000, 2nd place $750, 3rd place $500, and 7 runners-up will receive $100.

Students may submit one or two original poems, each with a maximum of 25 lines, by March 17, 2023. Ten finalists will recite their poems from memory at the competition on April 22, 2023. (Two alternates will be named as well.) Judges will consider both the quality of the poem itself and the skill of the recitation in determining competition winners; recitations allow for an embodiment of the poem but do not treat it as dramatic monologue.

While Mr. McPherson loved the sonnet, poems for this competition may be in any fixed or shaping form, including free verse. If you submit to this competition a poem that has been submitted or accepted for publication or contests elsewhere, you must disclose this information at the time of submission. Students must submit their poems below by Friday, March 17, 2023. Finalists will be notified by email by April 3, 2023. Recitation competition for finalists on Saturday, April 22, 2022. Students can submit their poetry at https://tinyurl.com/nhf8cpwr

If you have any questions email jwmpoetry@brookewood.org.

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