Poetry Competition Classifications and Rules
- Adults (18 years or older)
- Youth (14 to 17 years)
- Junior (11 years to 13 years)
- Sub-Junior (8 years to 10 years)
- Kinder (5 years to 7 years)
The poem topic will be provided according to the age divisions above. One topic per age division will be selected randomly and announced 5 minutes before the contest begins. Thus the contestants will not know the poem topic ahead of time. The contestants will have 45 minutes to complete a poem on the "given topic".
- The poem must be an original piece of work created by the contestant, onsite (i.e., in the Contest Room).
- The poem must be produced only on the paper provided.
- The poem can be in any style (Haiku, Limerick, sonnet etc.)
- Only a pencil will be provided, however contestants are encouraged to bring their own coloring pencils or crayons, if they wish to decorate their work in such a way that it does not obstruct their writing.
- No markers or paints are allowed.
- Poems submitted will not be returned under any circumstances. NEMA shall reserve the right to publish the work, name, school and photo of the participant in any manner it deems fit.
- An individual may only perform once in a single competitive category.
- Participants must be within the age range as of January 1, 2019.
- Copying or getting inspiration for the work from any sources, online or offline will immediately disqualify the entry.
- NEMA reserves the right to request proof of age, to verify the age of the participant if needed.
- Judges decisions are final. Participants are not to contact the judges to get the feedback on the performances.
The scoring is as follows:
|BEAUTY, POWER, EDUCATION||25 pts|
|ENTERTAINMENT, MESSAGE AND INTEREST||15 pts|
|TECHNICAL EXCELLENCE||15 pts|
|FORM & FLOW, CHOICE OF WORDS AND READABILITY||20 pts|
|OVERALL IMPACT, ORIGINALITY, POLISH AND EXPERTISE||25 pts|
Definitions of Judging Format
- BEAUTY, POWER, EDUCATION (AT LEAST ONE OF THESE NEED TO EXIST)
- BEAUTY - combination of colorful and descriptive language; beauty in the thoughts which are evoked e.g. serenity, nature; or even beauty in the presentation of the poem (some are shaped and formed to appear as something connected to the poem's subject matter, such as a lamp, an hour glass, a tree, a sail boat, a loaf of bread, etc.)
- POWER - does the poem move you; stirs some emotion within you be it pleasant or unpleasant?
- EDUCATION - Does the poem have any educational value; is it regarding some true event?
- ENTERTAINMENT, MESSAGE AND INTEREST
- ENTERTAINMENT - Does the poem have entertainment value? If it is not in some way beautiful, powerful, or educational, then it should certainly serve to entertain or amuse the reader. This could include such things as humor, irony, rhyming riddles, mystery, drama, horror, science fiction, parody, and satire.
- MESSAGE and INTEREST
Does the poem have a message to convey? Is the message of interest or value in the public arena.
- TECHNICAL EXCELLENCE - RHYME, METER, ASSONANCE AND ALLITERATION
- TECHNICAL - Is the poem grammatically strong? Errors in grammar, and misspelled words, incorrect punctuation can make the poem hard to read. Does it have the proper form for the type of poem: Haiku, Villanelle, Sonnet, Tanka, Limerick, etc.? Is it titled appropriately?
- RHYME - Poems don't have to rhyme, but rhyming poems need meter as well as rhyme. If a poem is written in rhyming verse, then it should be rated according to how well the rhymes fit, not only with each other, but with the flow and the intended nuance of meaning the verse demands.
- ASSONANCE - In poetry this has to do with the sounds of the words, and whether those sounds create the proper mood sought for in the poem: the sharp and soft sounds of the consonants, the hard (long) and soft sounds of the vowels. For example, In tranquil and pastoral type poems one would want to see words like softly, peacefully, quietly, hushed, etc., and not a lot of words that "snap, crackle, and pop". In describing a battle, one would hardly think of using a lot of soft and placid sounds.
- ALLITERATION - Has to do with a pleasing repetition of sounds, such as "She soared through the air with the greatest of ease" - note the repetition of the "s" and "th" sounds. Alliteration loosely implies sound quality in a poem.
- FORM & FLOW, CHOICE OF WORDS AND READABILITY
- FORM - The "form" of the poem simply refers to the shape the poem takes on paper: long lines or short lines, broken into verses, or left in an unbroken chain.
- FLOW - The flow of a poem is determined by its natural progression, both in thought, tempo, and speed. Consider the difference between "I'm going to go to work to earn my pay check" and "To work, to work, to earn a pay check".
- CHOICE OF WORDS - has to do with the best nuance of meaning. Here is where a rhyming poem could be severely penalized. The words used to make the best rhyme may not necessarily be the the best choice of words to convey the idea, or stir the emotion.
- READABILITY - After you have checked the author's choice of words and phrases, read a few verses out loud. Does it read easily, with the periods, commas, accents, and syllables flowing naturally, creating the proper tempo for the subject matter? Are there areas within the poem which seem to "trip" your tongue? Would it be "readable" out loud for the average person?
- OVERALL IMPACT, ORIGINALITY, POLISH AND EXPERTISE
- OVERALL IMPACT - the ability of the poem to be memorable, have some effect on you, and remain with you afterwards. One other consideration is the age of the author. If a young child writes an exceptional poem, we should allow the age itself to "impact" us.
- ORIGINALITY - Are the word groupings and phrases the writer uses the author's own words, or are they borrowed from someone else? This is not outright and intentional plagiarism, but the writing may be influenced by that of others. It is not that difficult to determine if extra effort has been taken by a writer to coin unusual phrases, or to make unusual comparisons. Extra points should be given to a poet who creates his own style in the rhythm and the rhyming patterns of a poem. Rhymes don't always have to be placed at the end of lines. Look for an unusual poem with an original, or unexpected ending, and a good amount of original wording.
- POLISH AND EXPERTISE - Does the poem itself appear graceful, smooth, natural, almost effortless? A good poem does not need to be "waxed eloquent" with incomprehensible words and indecipherable phrases. Can you literally see the time and effort that went into the poem, or does it have the appearance of being thrown together haphazardly, with little effort at editing out clumsy wording and awkward rhymes?
The winners are chosen as follows:
- If only one participant is registered for a category, an honorary mention will be given
- For a category with two or more participants, a first place winner is declared.
- For a category with three or more participants, a first place and second place winners are declared.
- For a category with five or more participants, a first place, second place and third place winners are declared.
** Judges decisions are final**
Participant Certificates will be awarded to all participants on the day of the event.
Trophies/Medals and winner certificates will be awarded to all winners at Drishya Finale.
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