Open For Entries
2018 Frost Farm Prize for Metrical Poetry
Deadline: March 30, 2018 (online submission deadline is 11:59 pm, EST).
The Trustees of the Robert Frost Farm in Derry, NH, and the Hyla Brook Poets invite submissions for the 8th Annual The Frost Farm Prize for metrical poetry. The winner receives $1,000 and an invitation, with honorarium, to read in June 2018 as part of The Hyla Brook Reading Series at the Robert Frost Farm. The reading opens the Frost Farm Poetry Conference, which is devoted to metrical poetry. The winner also receives a scholarship to attend the conference.
This year’s judge is Melissa Balmain the editor of Light, America's premier journal of light verse. She teaches humor writing, poetry and journalism at the University of Rochester. She was awarded the Able Muse Book Award and twice has been a finalist for the Howard Nemerov Sonnet Award. Her poems have appeared in American Arts Quarterly, American Life in Poetry, Lighten Up, Measure, Mezzo Cammin, Poetry Daily, and The Spectator. Her prose has been published in The New Yorker, The New York Times, McSweeney's, and Success. Her latest poetry collection is Walking in on People (Able Muse Press).
All entries will be anonymous. The judge will read every entry.
Complete Frost Farm Prize Guidelines (Guidelines are also posted on the electronic submission form):
Deadline: March 30, 2018 (online submission deadline by 11:59 pm, EST).
Poems must be original, unpublished and metrical (any metrical form). No translations. There is no limit to the number of poems entered by an individual, but an entry fee of $6 U.S. per poem must accompany the submission. You are welcome to submit a poem sequence (a crown of sonnets for example) but each poem must be entered as a separate file and will be judged individually.
ELECTRONIC ENTRIES (recommended):
All entries are via Submittable. If you do not have a Submittable account, you will be directed to set one up as part of the electronic entry process. It takes only seconds to register for an account.
Do not put your name on individual poems as poems are judged anonymously. Your Submittable account links you to the poem. Each individual poem must be a separate .pdf, .doc or .docx file that should resemble the following format: poemtitle.pdf, poemtitle.doc or poemtitle.docx. "Poemtitle" in the file name should exactly match the title typed at the top of the poem. PLEASE USE A SINGLE SUBMITTABLE SUBMISSION TO ATTACH UP TO TEN POEMS IN SEPARATE DOCUMENTS. The online form supports 1-10 attachments in .pdf, .doc or .docx formats. If you are submitting more than 10 poems, simply complete an additional Submittable submission and attach up to 10 additional poems. You are free to submit as many poems as you wish in this manner. Click the button below to enter our Submittable site.
For those who do not want to submit electronically, we will still accept paper submissions per below:
An entry fee of $6 U.S. per poem must accompany the submission (entry fees from outside the United States must be paid in cash or by check drawn on a U.S. bank). Make checks payable to "Hyla Brook Poets." Please type the author's name, address, phone number and e-mail address on the back of each entry. Each entry will be submitted to the judge anonymously.
Send entries to:
The Frost Farm Prize
280 Candia Rd.
Chester, NH 03036
The results will be posted in May 2018 on FrostFarmPoetry.org and Facebook.com/HylaBrookPoets as well as twitter.com/HylaBrookPoets. Winner and honorable mentions (if any) will be notified by email or phone. Please DO NOT send a SASE for contest results. These are the complete guidelines.
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2017 Frost Farm Prize Winner
The winner of the 7th Annual Frost Farm Prize for metrical poetry was Caitlin Doyle of Cincinnati, Ohio, for her poem, "Wish."
Caitlin. Doyle received $1,000, and was a featured reader at The Hyla Brook Reading Series at the Robert Frost Farm in Derry, NH. Her reading kicked off the third annual Frost Farm Poetry Conference (June 16-18, 2017). Her winning poem was subsequently published in The Yale Review.
Caitlin Doyle’s poetry, essays, and reviews have appeared or are forthcoming in The Atlantic, Boston Review, The New Criterion, The Los Angeles Review of Books, The Threepenny Review, and others. Her poetry has also been featured through the PBS NewsHour Poetry Series and the Poetry Foundation’s “Poem of the Day” series. Doyle has held Writer-In-Residence teaching positions at Penn State, St. Albans School, and Interlochen Arts Academy. Her awards and fellowships include residencies at the Yaddo Colony, the James Merrill House, and the MacDowell Colony, as well as an Amy Award in Poetry through Poets & Writers. She has received scholarships through the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Association of Writers & Writing Programs, and the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, among others. She is currently an Elliston Fellow in Poetry at the University of Cincinnati, and she will serve as the Assistant Editor of The Cincinnati Review this upcoming fall. To learn more about herbackground and writing, you can visit her website at http://caitlindoylepoetry.com.
Commenting about the winning poem, the 2017 judge, Deborah Warren said, " This poem is a masterpiece masquerading (with its incantatory beat and simple language) as a Mother Goose rhyme. It’s also that rare poem where the form is integral to the story. Each of the first four trimeter couplets expresses one of the speaker’s wishes. Each line begins with ‘I told him I needed’ . . .), The final three couplets look back on the the wishes with wrenching regret. Following each little couplet is a parenthesis: one tetrameter line explaining why the wish, although granted, ironically failed. The parentheses play on the idiom ‘wishing for the moon’. They rhyme, and—taken by themselves—collectively make a poem in their own right. On the other hand, if you do remove these parentheses, the seven trimeter coupletsthemselves make up an unrhymed sonnet—with a conventional volta between the octave and the sestet. It’s the poem’s tone that is so sad. The deceptively nursery-rhymish repetitions (I told him in the octave; Now I have in the sestet) only emphasize the speaker’s desolation."
The judge read all 763 anonymous entries and, in addition to selecting the winner, chose two poems as Finalists:
"Conversion Therapy" by Yakov Azriel, of Efrat, Israel.
"At a Performance of Brahms’ Liebeslieder Waltze" by Jean Kreiling, of Bridgewater, Massachusetts.
Deborah Warren said , "Looking through over 700 entries in the Frost Farm poetry competition was so rewarding! Reading so many wonderful poems written in meter was literal music to my ears. After narrowing the ‘semi-finalists’ to a half-dozen poems, I had a delightful but difficult job. But too much excellence is not a bad problem for a judge. I thank all the participants for giving me such pleasant job!.”
Caitlin Doyle described her reaction to be selected as the winner: "I’m honored to be chosen as the winner of the Frost Farm Prize. Robert Frost is one of the first poets who entranced me in childhood, and he has remained a major figure in my reading life. Whenever I teach poetry, I start the first day of class with a focus on his poem “Birches,” which I’ve always regarded as one of the most stirring and masterful poems in the English language. My hope is for students to feel in their bodies the way that the rhythm of the poem mirrors its narrative movements and emotional contours. I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to spend time this summer at the Frost Farm in Derry, where Frost wrote many of his most compelling poems, and I hope to glimpse some New Hampshire birch trees through the window of the barn."
I told him I needed time –
he gave me a cuckoo clock
(I couldn’t work the winding key)
I told him I needed space –
he gave me a telescope
(or make the moon look back at me)
I told him I needed change –
he gave me a penny jar
(or stop from spending every cent)
I told him I needed more –
he led me to the well
(or count up every wish I’d spent)
Now I have so much time,
the cuckoo’s flown away
(the moon’s a clock that’s come unwound)
Now I have so much space,
it’s night for days on end
(the moon’s a shadow on the ground)
Now I have so much change,
the well’s just one more wish
(the moon’s a coin the well has drowned)
Previous Prize Winners:
2016 James Najarien of Auburndale, Massachussets for "Dark Ages" -- Judge David Rothman
2015 Kevin Durkin of Santa Monica, California for "Meteor Crater" - Judge Joshua Mehigan
2014 Rob Wright of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for "Meetings with my Father" - Judge Rhina Espaillat
2013 Caki Wilkinson of Sewanee, Tennessee, for "Arts and Crafts" - Judge Catherine Tufariello
2012 Richard Meyer of Mankato, Minnesota, for, "Fieldstone" - Judge Richard Wakefield
2011 Sharon Fish Mooney of Coshocton, Ohio for "Dimly Burning Wicks" - Judge Bill Baer
Click our Facebook and Twitter links at the bottom of this page and follow us to receive timely updates on the 7th Annual Frost Farm Prize for metrical poetry as well as our other programs.
About the Frost Farm’s Hyla Brook Poets
The Frost Farm was home to the poet and his family from 1900-1909. The Hyla Brook Poets, a 501(c)(3), started in 2008 as a monthly poetry workshop. In March 2009, the Hyla Brook Reading Series launched with readings by emerging poets as well as luminaries such as Maxine Kumin, David Ferry, Linda Pastan, and Sharon Olds. The Frost Farm Prize was introduced in 2010, followed by the inaugural Frost Farm Poetry Conference in 2015.