PB POETRY FESTIVAL Launches ‘Looking Glass’ Poetry Contest with Old School Square’s Cornell Museum of Art

Susan R. Williamson, Director of the Palm Beach Poetry Festival, has announced the 2018 Ekphrastic Poetry Contest, inspired by the LOOKING GLASS exhibition which is on display through February 24 at the Cornell Museum at Old School Square in Delray Beach.

To enter, writers are encouraged to submit up to 30 lines of original poetry inspired by one of eight designated images featured in the LOOKING GLASS exhibition that delves into ways in which visual artists approach ideas of reflection and perception.

“The unique artworks on display allow viewers to see themselves in the works and to find a sense of belonging in the Cornell Art Museum,” says Williamson.

The eight designated images include Five Squares by Chul Hyun-Ahn, Portrait of Joan Agajanian Quinn by Andrew Logan, One Day You’ll Be Mine by Graeme Messer, Muse by Jeremy Penn, Dog Mirror by Liliana Porter, Outer Reflection by Lilibeth Rasmussen, Façade by Elle Schorr, and Invisible Quilt by Peter Symons.

The winning poet will receive a $100 prize, and $25 will be given to each of the four runners-up. Their submitted poems – along with another five “honorable mentions” – will be published on the Poetry Festival’s website at www.palmbeachpoetryfestival.org.

“The poetic tradition of taking inspiration from works of art is called ‘ekphrasis’ from the Greek,” explains Williamson. “Ekphrastic Poems may include literal descriptions of a work of art, the poet´s mood in response to a work of art, metaphorical associations inspired by a work of art, or personal memories about a work of art. It’s a tradition quite alive in America today, and we’re pleased to once again join with the Cornell Museum to present this opportunity for poets to be inspired.”

For more details and to view the eight designated images from the LOOKING GLASS exhibition, please visit: http://www.palmbeachpoetryfestival.org/news/looking-glass-ekphrastic-poetry-contest/.

Deadline for submission is March 1, 2018. All submissions will be accepted via Submittable:


The Contest Judge is Stephen Gibson, author of seven poetry collections, most recently, Self-Portrait in a Door-Length Mirror, winner of the 2017 Miller Williams Prize, selected by Billy Collins and nominated for the 2018 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry. His poetry and fiction have appeared in such journals as American Arts Quarterly, Gargoyle, The Georgia Review, The Gettysburg Review, North American Review, The Paris Review, Pleiades, Poetry, River StyxThe Sewanee Review, ShenandoahThe Southern Review, and The Yale Review among others. He taught for 32 years at the Belle Glade campus of Palm Beach State College.


There is no age limit to enter. All entries must be previously unpublished and submitted in English.