Houston Poetry Fest

There are presently no open calls for submissions.

Deadline: July 31, 2017

Houston Poetry Fest main events will be held at Willow Street Pump Station, 811 N. San Jacinto Street, on the campus of the University of Houston – Downtown, on October 13, 14 and 15, 2017.


 Poems submitted should be combined into a single Word file (doc or docx):

  •  Submit up to five original poems that total no more than three 8½X11 pages, single column, in Times New Roman, 11 point font.
  • The pages in the anthology will have a maximum line width of 3.83 inches. Format your poem so that your lines, including indented lines, fit within that with width.
  • Each poem must have a title. If a poem does not have a title, use its first line as the title.
  • Previously published poems are acceptable, if the rights have reverted to you.
  • If poems are in a language other than English, provide translations.
  • Do not put your name or any identifying information on the poem pages.
  • Do not use your name in the title of the file.
  • Remove all personal or hidden data in the file.

In the space for personal information, which is separate, supply your

  • Name
  • Address
  • Phone numbers
  • Email address
  • A list of the titles of your poems
  • Publication info on any poems that have previously ben published
  • A bio of no more than 100 words, written in the third person
  • An indication whether you are a woman and/or a K-12 teacher in order to be considered for the Lorene Pouncey and/or Lucille Johnson Clark awards (see below).

 There is an $18 submission fee (paid via Submittable).


 Poets selected to read as Juried Poets at Houston Poetry Fest will be considered for two awards, donated by friends of poetry (one for women, and one for K-12 classroom teachers:

    All women selected as Juried Poets will automatically be considered for a $250 cash prize established by Sandi Glorfield in honor of the late Lorene Pouncey, one of the founders of Houston Poetry Fest, who passed away December 4, 2011.
    All Juried pPets who are K-12 classroom teachers are eligible for the Lucille Johnson Clark Memorial Award. A $100 cash prize is provided to the winner. The award was established by Robert Clark in honor of his late mother who was a classroom teacher.

The Juried Process

The judges see only the poems in a poet's submission, without the name, or any identifying information, about the poet. They score each set of poems as a whole. The highest-scoring poets will be selected as the Houston Poetry Fest 2017 Juried Poets. Approximately 20 to 25 poets will be selected as Juried Poets.

The Juried Poets will receive:

  • Five minutes each onstage to read their own original poetry,
  • Their names listed in the official printed program, and on the Houston Poetry Fest website, www.HoustonPoetryFest.info
  • Inclusion of one of their poems in the Houston Poetry Fest 2017 Anthology, and
  • One complimentary copy of the Anthology..

Additional copies of the Anthology may be purchased at the event for $15 each. Copies may also be purchased by mail for $17 each ($15, plus $2 shipping and handling), at Houston Poetry Fest Anthology Sales, P. O. Box 22595, Houston, TX 77227-2595.

Houston Poetry Fest, an annual celebration of poetry and those who create it, is sponsored by Houston Poetry Fest, a 501c(3) non-profit arts organization, 100% staffed by unpaid volunteers, and is co-sponsored by the Department of English and the Cultural Enrichment Center of the University of Houston – Downtown. The entire event is free and open to the public.