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The Maine Poets Society Prize Poem Contests 2024

The Maine Poets Society is proud to present our seventh annual Maine Prize Poem Contest, open to all Maine residents. There are two categories: one for poets who have been previously published and one for those who have not. This year we are pleased to announce that we have increased the amount of the prize awards to $150 and $75 respectively. The deadline is March 30, 2024.


  • Open to all Maine residents, including seasonal, except for Maine Poets Society board members.
  • Entries must be postmarked between January 15th and March 30th, 2024.
  • There is a $6 entry fee for the $150 prize poem contest, and a $3.00 entry fee for the $75 contest for previously unpublished poets.
  • You may enter up to 4 poems. Each poem requires a separate entry fee.
  • Previously published poems are not eligible. Publication in a newsletter or an online workshop does not count for this purpose.
  • Topic and form are left open, but there is a 50-line limit, not counting title and epigraph. Entries exceeding this will be disqualified.

Submission Process

  • Please send two copies of your poem, one identified with your name, mailing address, email address and telephone number and which contest you are entering (previously published or not previously published) and one with no additional information, to MPS Vice President Gus Peterson, 12 Middle Street, Randolph, ME 04346.
  • If your entry will be postmarked out of state, please enclose a letter verifying your address when resident in Maine.
  • Mark your envelope CONTEST. 
  • Enclose a check payable to Maine Poets Society, with ‘Contest entry’ on the memo line. Entries will not be returned, so please retain a copy.


Our distinguished judge for the $150 prize poem contest in 2024 will be Judy Kaber, winner of last year’s Prize Poem contest, and former Belfast Poet Laureate. Judy has published poems in numerous journals and anthologies and is the winner of several contests. She is the author of three chapbooks.


Our prizes will be presented at the 2024 Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance awards evening. The shortlists will be announced beforehand by email and on the MPS Facebook page.


Winners of our September 2023 Members-only Contest

Contest: Music
Judge: Jim Mello

First Place –“Finch Aria” – Alice Lee Timmins
Second Place –“Fall Music” – Susan Van Alsenoy
Third Place –“Foggy Morning Song” – Sharon Bray

First Honorable Mention –“Song” – Timothy Barlow
Second Honorable Mention –“Do Mi Ti So Do Re Fa La” – Pat Karpen
Third Honorable Mention – “My Mistake” – Sally Joy
Fourth Honorable Mention – “Mindfully” – Dean Abby


Results of the 2023 Prize Poems Contests

Published Poets Prize Poem Contest
The Winner of the $100 prize: Judy Kaber – “Cutting Trees Beside Westcott Stream
Runner up: Richard Foerster – “After Listening with a Friend to Marty Balin sing ‘Comin' back to me’’ and “Early Gothic Tales

Unpublished Poets Prize Poem Contest
The Winner of the $50 prize: Jennifer Enders – “Loss
Honorable Mention: Kelly Grenier – “Diffusion
Honorable Mention: Peter Beckford – “November Sun


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