Wocky Jivvy: Poetry and Art "When the flush of a new-born sun fell first on Eden's green and gold,
Our father Adam sat under the Tree and scratched with a stick in the mould;
And the first rude sketch that the world had seen was joy to his mighty heart,
Till the Devil whispered behind the leaves, "It's pretty, but is it Art?"
from Rudyard Kipling's The Conundrum of the Workshops

divider line and nothing more


The National Library of Poetry and International Library of Poetry

See our Wretched Poems the National Library of Poetry deemed Semi-Finalist Worthy The National Library of Poetry (now the "International Library of Poetry" and hosted at poetry.com) sponsors poetry "contests" several times throughout each year. Each "contest" promises monetary award for the winners... and offers all "semi-finalists" the chance to be included in an anthology... and the chance to purchase the anthology for a not so pretty little sum. This scheme seems pleasant enough -- until one realizes that it is very possibly impossible to write something dreadful enough that it won't be chosen as a "semi-finalist".

The poems presented here represent attempts to write something that the austere judges for the National Library of Poetry would deem so horrible that they could not, in good conscience, bestow the status "semi-finalist".

The quest is valiant, though, to date, unsuccessful (take a peek at one of the letters of acceptance). The only writing guideline used for the poems presented here was that the poet could take no longer than two minutes per poem (except in the case of Dawn of a New Eve, an acrostic... and the author's personal favorite).

More thoughts on the International Library of Poetry
It's not just the folk of Wocky Jivvy who have had this experience -- check out the comments and links to more NLOP stories at Charlie Hughes' page (why, columnist Dave Barry has even gotten into the act.)

See a sample of the standard letter of acceptance.

More Winners
Here are some additional poems (by David Taub) that are also sterling examples of poems that have been selected to be published by the "International Library of Poetry":

Is this is a scam?
"Scam" is in the eye of the beholder and we leave that to you to decide for yourself. The National Library of Poetry (International Library of Poetry), doesn't say they'll use discretion in the poems they select as winners or semi-finalists -- so some will say it is the NLP's prerogative to select even really really bad "poetry" as "winners."

Does this mean if my poem was accepted, that my poem is BAD?
Absolutely not. It just means your poem was accepted. Nothing more, nothing less.

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