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2023 Anne Bradstreet Poetry Contest - Announcement and Rules

Sunday, February 27, 2022

Anne Bradstreet Poetry Contest 2022 - Announcement and Rules

2022 Anne Bradstreet 
Poetry Contest

In honor of Anne Bradstreet, the North Andover Poet Laureate Committee is announcing the 2nd annual Anne Bradstreet Poetry Contest. 

All who live, work or go to school in North Andover are invited to take part.

Our town is the home of America's first published poet, Anne Bradstreet (1612-1672). Anne arrived here at the very founding of the town in the early 1640's with her husband and their young children. She made her life in that frontier settlement.  She made her mark in the world of poetry right here in North Andover. Her first collection, "The Tenth Muse Lately Sprung Up in America", was widely read in America and England, an uncommon achievement for a woman in the post-Elizabethan English world. Anne lived and raised her family - and wrote her poetry - right here. Anne is an inspiration to all of us on the Poet Laureate Committee, and why we named the contest after her.

In her spirit, we are inviting all members of the North Andover community to submit a poem on this year’s theme:

2022 Theme: 
Message In A Bottle: 
A Letter To The Future

Since we’re poets, we bring you the rules…in rhyme. šŸ˜Š
(Teachers – read this to your classes, it’s worth the time!)

How do I enter? What should I do?
This poem has the rules, the words are the clue!
We’re calling North Andover – all ages – from the old to the new –
Enter Anne’s contest – our second year – hello 2022!

Think of a poem to drop in a bottle, one to throw in the sea.
Think of sending it to a far tomorrow for someone to find and read.
It could be about people or places – what is special these days? 
It could be about the great or the small – but what would you say?

That’s our request: send us a poem on this year’s theme –
"Message in a Bottle: A Letter to the Future" – that’s the meme.
Use the contest email, choose the right category –
Open to adults, high school, middle, or elementary!
Send us your thoughts – look to the future – 
   What words must be said?
On the town common, we’ll invite all the winners 
   To share the thoughts in their head!


  • Open to all who either live, work or go to school in North Andover
  • Submit in one of 5 age categories: Grades 1-2, Grades 3-5, Middle School, High School, Adult
  • Each person may submit up to two poems
  • There is no specific style, it can be rhyming or free verse, however the theme speaks to you.
  • The top three in each category will be invited to perform their poems on the North Andover Common
  • By submitting a poem, the author / parent / guardian gives the North Andover Poet Laureate Committee the right to publish the poems online and on the FB North Andover Poets page, and in a collected book of poems for the event.
  • Parents/guardians of school age children have the right to approve the identifying information for school age children, whether 1) the name, school, and grade, 2) initials, school and grade, or 3) only school and grade is published.
  • The poem copyright remains with the author.
  • Email to:
  • Subject: Age Category (Grade 1-2, Grade 3-5, middle school, high school, adult)
  • Body: your name, email address, mailing address, age category, poem(s)
  • If sending an attached document, include the name and other information in each document
  • Those without email address, ask an adult in the household with email to submit
  • April 30 - Final date to submit poems
  • May 14 - Winners and finalists announced 
  • May 21 - Award ceremony on the North Andover Common - Winners and finalists will read their poems. (May 22 rain date)
Email any questions to

The contest and poetry celebration is sponsored by the North Andover Poet Laureate Committee

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