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Famous Competition Poems by Famous Poets

These are examples of famous Competition poems written by some of the greatest and most-well-known modern and classical poets. PoetrySoup is a great educational poetry resource of famous competition poems. These examples illustrate what a famous competition poem looks like and its form, scheme, or style (where appropriate).

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by Stojanovic, Dejan
There is a thunder note
In an angry sky.

Sound unbound by nature
Becomes bounded by art.
There is no competition of sounds
Between a nightingale and a violin.

Nature rewards and punishes
By offering unpredictable ways; 
Art is apotheosis; 
Often, the complaint of beauty.

Nature is an outcry, 
Unpolished truth; 
The art—a euphemism— 
Tamed wilderness. ...Read More

by Eliot, T S (Thomas Stearns)
...on, has already been discovered
Once or twice, or several times, by men whom one cannot hope
To emulate—but there is no competition—
There is only the fight to recover what has been lost
And found and lost again and again: and now, under conditions
That seem unpropitious. But perhaps neither gain nor loss.
For us, there is only the trying. The rest is not our business.

 Home is where one starts from. As we grow older
The world becomes stranger, the patter...Read More

by Gregory, Rg
...youth again and bubble with
its springs - opening worn valves
to give such flow their own direction

there's no need of competition
no wish to prove that one of us
holds keys the others don't to the
sacral chambers - no want to find
consensus in technique or drench 
the rites of words in orthodox 
belief - difference is essential
and delightful (integrity's all)

quality's a private quarrel
between the poem and the poet - taste
the private hang-up of receivers
mostly migraine...Read More

by Dickinson, Emily
...cannot meet the Spring unmoved --
I feel the old desire --
A Hurry with a lingering, mixed,
A Warrant to be fair --

A Competition in my sense
With something hid in Her --
And as she vanishes, Remorse
I saw no more of Her....Read More

by Dickinson, Emily
...I send Two Sunsets --
Day and I -- in competition ran --
I finished Two -- and several Stars --
While He -- was making One --

His own was ampler -- but as I
Was saying to a friend --
Mine -- is the more convenient
To Carry in the Hand --...Read More

by Kipling, Rudyard
For I am in charge of the lower deck with all that doth belong --
Which they would not give to a lunatic, and the competition so strong!...Read More

by Dickinson, Emily
Like the remembering it be nought
A Period from hence
But Contemplation for
Contemporaneous Nought
Our Single Competition
Jehovah's Estimate....Read More

by Milton, John
...s a Prophecy receive: for God,
Nothing more certain, will not long defer
To vindicate the glory of his name
Against all competition, nor will long
Endure it, doubtful whether God be Lord,
Or Dagon. But for thee what shall be done?
Thou must not in the mean while here forgot
Lie in this miserable loathsom plight 
Neglected. I already have made way
To some Philistian Lords, with whom to treat
About thy ransom: well they may by this
Have satisfi'd thir utmost of revenge
...Read More

by Nash, Ogden
..., hanging pictures, be the rookie wizard
Who fills the parlor with a plaster blizzard.
He'll not again be called to competition
With decorator or with electrician.

At last it dawns upon his patient spouse
He's better at his desk than round the house....Read More

by Clough, Arthur Hugh
...false witness; let the lie
Have time on its own wings to fly:
Thou shalt not covet, but tradition
Approves all forms of competition....Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey
..., had leading parts in the
mysteries or religious plays; Herod was one of these parts,
which may have been an object of competition among the
amateurs of the period.

23 ."The nighe sly maketh oft time the far lief to be loth": a
proverb; the cunning one near at hand oft makes the loving one
afar off to be odious.

24. Kyked: Looked; "keek" is still used in some parts in the
sense of "peep."

25. Saint Frideswide was the patroness of a considerable pri...Read More

by Padel, Ruth
...' t crawl on the straight
razor and live. I'm innocent.

(This poem was Commended in the 1992 National Poetry Competition)...Read More

by Paterson, Andrew Barton
Shout the joyful news; 
Down they drop like snow descending, 
Clouds of cockatoos. 

At their husking competition 
Hear them screech and yell. 
On a gum tree's high position 
Sits a sentinel. 
Soon the boss goes boundary riding; 
But the wise old bird, 
Mute among the branches hiding, 
Never says a word. 

Then you hear the strident squalling: 
"Here's the boss's son, 
Through the garden bushes crawling, 
Crawling with a gun. 
May the shiny c...Read More

by Nash, Ogden on faster at the top than at the bottom because
there are more people at the bottom than at the top so naturally the competition
at the bottom is stiffer.
If you need any further proof that my theory works
Well, nobody can deny that presidents get paid more than vice-presidents and
vice-presidents get paid more than clerks.
Stop looking at me quizzically;
I want to add that you will never achieve fortune in a job that makes you
uncomfortable physically.
When an...Read More

by Dickinson, Emily unabated
Informed the hour had come
With no remiss of triumph
The autumn started home

Her home to be with Nature
As competition done
By influential kinsmen
Invited to return --

In supplements of Purple
An adequate repast
In heavenly reviewing
Her residue be past --...Read More

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