We want your poems for The Enterprise Spring Poetry Extravaganza!
Friday, March 29, 2019
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Drawing by Joseph Bullington (with color help from Nate Howard)

In my experience, writing poetry is more like hunting than it’s like writing. It’s hard for me to sit down and write a poem — hard to approach it directly. As poet William Stafford writes, “Poetry is the kind of thing you have to see from the corner of your eye.”

You can’t decide to write a poem, at least a good one, anymore than you can decide to go get an elk. The best you can do in both cases is head out into the country where the wild things hang out, be quiet, be still, wait, maybe pray. And, like wild animals, in my experience poems favor wild country at the quicksilver hours of dawn and twilight.

That doesn’t mean there’s no work or skill involved. A good hunter knows how animals behave, knows the country, knows humility, and adjusts her life accordingly. Likewise, a poet is someone who has tuned his life to maximize those timeless moments of awareness when poems are afoot.

If you’ve had the good fortune to glimpse a wild poem, we’d like to see your notes from the encounter.

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In celebration of National Poetry Month, we at The Enterprise plan to publish poems submitted by our readers on our Community Page throughout the month of April, as part of our first ever Enterprise Spring Poetry Extravaganza!

Each week, our editors will comb through the submissions and choose some — how many will depend on the number of submissions we get — to run in the paper that week.

Submission Guidelines

If you’d like to see your poetry in print, please send it to us at or drop a hard copy by the office.

Deadlines (we are a newspaper, after all) are as follows:

• To enter your poem to run on April 10 or 12, please submit it by end of the day on Monday, April 8.

• To enter for April 17 or 19, please submit your poem by the end of the day Monday, April 15.

• To enter for April 24 or 26, please submit your poem by the end of the day Monday, April 22.

Include with your submission: your name, where you live, and a good way to get in touch with you. We want your name because we want to give you credit and bragging rights if we publish your work, but poem selection will be done anonymously.

Finally, there is no limit in theme or word count — but keep in mind that we’ve got somewhat limited space. If your poem fills a whole page, it’s less likely to be chosen — unless it’s really, really good, of course. For more information, call Community News Editor Joseph Bullington at The Enterprise at 222-2000.

All right, enough rules — let the Extravaganza begin!