Annual Poetry Contest

The 2020 Poetry contest is closed to submissions. We’ll be back next year. Each year Third Wednesday awards 3 $100 Prizes in its annual poetry contest. For this year’s contest, entries were accepted from November 15, 2019 through February 15, 2020.

We’re pleased to announce our judge for this year’s contest is Marilyn Taylor, former Poet Laureate of the city of Milwaukee (2004 -2005) and the state of Wisconsin, (2009 – 2010). She is the author of six poetry collections.  Marilyn’s award-winning poems and essays have appeared in many anthologies and journals, including Poetry, American Scholar, Able Muse, American Life in Poetry and Measure. She also served for five years as a regular poetry columnist for The Writer magazine.

“What I look for in a poem is the sense that I am somehow being addressed. I want to see that the poet has the reader in mind. Equally important to me is the poet’s skillful and fresh use of contemporary language and imagery.” – Marilyn

Winning poets and honorable mentions will receive a print copy of the contest issue. Non-prize poems will be considered for inclusion in the same or later issue of 3rd Wednesday as a regular submission unless the poet chooses not to have them considered (to preserve eligibility for other contests).

We will accept contest entries of up to 3 previously unpublished poems of any style and subject matter. There is no limit on length. Poems should be uploaded as a single .doc or .docx file with no identifying information within the text of the file. For poems with unusual spacing, do not use tabs. All entries must come through our submissions management portal at Submittable.  If you are not already a Submittable user, registration is free. We will not accept entries by mail or email.  You may enter as many times as you like, but only three poems per entry.

To see last year’s winners and honorable mentions, you can download 2019’s Spring issue. Just click the “Free Issues” menu item above.