54th Dyer-Ives Poetry Competition

Funded by:

 

About the Annual Kent County Dyer-Ives Poetry Competition

The Dyer-Ives Poetry Competition was started in 1968 by poet James Allen at the urging of John Hunting, the founder of the Dyer-Ives Foundation, to encourage excellence in writing and to provide recognition for local work of high quality. The annual contest is open to poets ages 5 through adult who reside in Kent County. Submissions are open Feb 1 – 28, 2022. Winners selected in different categories have their poems published in Voices, receive a cash award, and participate in a reading.

 

2022 Divisions and Awards

Elementary School | Grades K – 2

1st Place: $25 & publication
2nd Place: publication

Elementary School | Grades 3 – 4

1st Place: $25 & publication
2nd Place: publication

Middle School | Grades 5 – 6

1st Place: $50 & publication
2nd Place: publication

Middle School | Grades 7 – 8

1st Place: $50 & publication
2nd Place: publication

High School | Grades 9 – 10

1st Place: $75 & publication
2nd Place: publication

High School | Grades 11 – 12

1st Place: $100 & publication
2nd Place: publication

Undergraduate

1st Place: $100 & publication
2nd Place: $75 & publication

Adult

1st Place: $150 & publication
2nd Place: $125 & publication
3rd Place: $100 & publication

Eligibility

  • Open to Kent County, Michigan residents of all ages.
  • Open to students attending classes within Kent County, including GVSU.
  • Free to enter.
  • One poem per person will be accepted. The poem must be original and unpublished.
  • Submissions are open Feb 1 – 28, 2022

Resources for Teacher’s

Voices Publication

Voices is published annually to highlight the winners of the Dyer-Ives Poetry Competition. Check out the winning poems from 2021.

2022 Judges

Megan Klco-Kellner
Megan Klco Kellner is an artist, writer, and museum educator with an MFA from Kendall College of Art and Design and a BFA from Truman State University. Her paintings have been exhibited regionally and nationally. Her poetry chapbook What Will You Teach Her? won the 2019 Michigan Writers Cooperative Press Prize. She and her husband are birding, planting flowers, and trying to raise two good humans in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Tae Scott
Taylor Taylor, also known as Tae Scott, is a spoken word artist who will bring you to tears and laughter with the performance of a single piece. Her raw emotions captivate the audience and immediately bond them to her life experiences. This incredible energy has won Taylor a spot on the first team to represent West Michigan in a National Poetry Slam in over a decade! Her body of work focuses on finding God’s peace and healing during and after life’s storms. Although she loves poetry, her main focus in life is being the best mother she can be to her daughter, and helping others on their journey to healing.

Amanda Zerilli
Amanda Zerilli is a spoken word artist that claims the stage. She creates space for complicated subjects in current culture and through her autobiographical poetry. She has competed in national poetry completions; Individual Worlds Poetry Competition in 2017 and The National Poetry Competition in 2018 where her team placed 3rd in group finals. While competitions are exciting, her biggest accomplishments have been personal growth through writing, using poems in therapy to heal and providing support and encouragement to others. Everyone can be a poet and there should be no gate keeping in education. Her dream is for people to realize their own power and how much their voice matters; on and off the page.

2022 National Judge

José Olivarez

José Olivarez is the son of Mexican immigrants. His debut book of poems, Citizen Illegal, was a finalist for the PEN/ Jean Stein Award and a winner of the 2018 Chicago Review of Books Poetry Prize.

2022 Competition Reception

54th Annual Dyer-Ives Poetry Competition Reception
Saturday, June 4, 2022, 1:00 – 2:00 pm
Main Library –  111 Library Street NE

The 54th Annual Dyer-Ives Poetry Competition Reception will take place during the annual Festival of the Arts celebration. Enjoy poems read aloud by winners in each category in the Ryerson Auditorium located in the Main Library. 

Questions?

If you have questions about the competition, email us or call 616.988.5400.