Daily Archives: January 28, 2017

Submissions: $500 Zócalo Poetry Prize

Poetry-Prize-e1450819853280Since 2012, the Zócalo Public Square Poetry Prize has been awarded annually to the U.S. poet whose poem best evokes a connection to place.

“Place” may be interpreted by the poet as a place of historical, cultural, political, or personal importance; it may be a literal, imaginary, or metaphorical landscape. Zócalo is looking for one poem that offers their readers a fresh, original, and meaningful take on the topic.

Like everything else they feature, they are most on the lookout for that rare combination of brilliance and clarity, excellence, and accessibility. Please take a look at winning entries from 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016.

The winning poet in 2017, as judged by the Zócalo staff, will receive $500.

The poetry prize competition is hosted in conjunction with their book prize, awarded to the nonfiction book that most enhances an understanding of community.

Submission Guidelines


Poems must be original and previously unpublished work. Entries will be accepted until February 3, 2017.


For consideration, please send up to three poems to poetry@zocalopublicsquare.org.

Please attach poem(s) as a single Word document to your email. Include your name, address, phone number, and email address on each poem. Personal identification will be removed prior to judge’s review. Online submissions only.


Entries will be judged based on originality of ideas, how well the poem fits the theme, and style. Judging is at the sole discretion of Zócalo Public Square. The winner will be announced in March 2017, and the winning poet will receive $500. The winning poem will be published on zocalopublicsquare.org.


The winning poem becomes the property of Zócalo Public Square. By entering the contest, the entrant grants Zócalo the right to publish and distribute his or her poem for media and publicity purposes, along with the poet’s name and photograph. Writers will be contacted by Zócalo before they publish any submission, either for the contest or on their site.