Don't Defer Those Dreams

Calling all poet-architects! Zócalo is looking for place-based poetry

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The Zócalo Public Square Poetry Prize is looking for U.S. poems tied to the spirit of a place. (Vadim Timoshkin/Courtesy Flickr)
The Zócalo Public Square Poetry Prize is looking for U.S. poems tied to the spirit of a place. (Vadim Timoshkin/Courtesy Flickr)

Two roads diverge in a career,
And sorry I could not travel both…

That’s how the Robert Frost poem goes, right? No? Okay, well, moving on—if you’re an architect who has dreamed of writing poetry or maybe a poet who loves to read about architecture, then we have the competition for you. Zócalo Public Square, the online “knowledge enterprise” nonprofit is looking for the poem that “best evokes a connection to place.” According to Zócalo: “‘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.”

They’re not looking for just any old poem; they want ones that you have written (and presumably are better than the poorly plagiarized verse above). Poems also must be previously unpublished and poets must be based in the U.S. The deadline for entry is February 4.

This is the ninth year of the competition, and previous winners have written about Tucson, Cleveland, and San Diego, among other places.

Winners receive $500, a published interview, and the applause of place-appreciating people around the world.

For more information, see the Zócalo Public Square Poetry Prize site here.

We’ll leave you with our own favorite lines from Le Corbuspeare:

To architect, or not to architect: that is the question.
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous clients,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them. To die: to sleep.

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