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MASTER LIST OF ALL STYLE INVITATIONAL CONTESTS

Suggestions and questions are welcome and encouraged.

THEME: POE

PUB DATE WEEK TITLE SYNOPSIS THEMES LINKS TO THIS CONTEST WINNER LINKS TO RESULTS OF THIS CONTEST (usually published 2-4 Weeks later)
May 23, 1993 12  HERE, DOGGEREL …  Write a limerick. It must contain one of the following names: "Hillary Rodham Clinton," "Jack Kevorkian," "George Stephanopoulos" or "Bosnia-Herzegovina."  LIM POE   Text file | Post PDF  Jimmy Nguyen  Text file | Post PDF 
January 23, 1994 47  CAN YOU DO VERSE?  Bad Valentine's Day poetry. Any rhyme scheme, any form of literary dysfunction.  POE   Text file | Post PDF  Michael Paulkovich  Text file | Post PDF 
September 18, 1994 79  TERROR-DACTYL  Send us a double dactyl. The first line must be a nonsense phrase of five to seven syllables containing exactly two downbeats. The second line must be a name, in five to seven syllables but only two downbeats. The remaining six lines must contain four to seven syllables and two downbeats each, with Lines 4 and 8 rhyming. Somewhere in the poem, one line must consist of only one word.  POE   Text file | Post PDF  Kitty Thuermer  Text file | Post PDF 
March 12, 1995 104  HERE, DOGGEREL  Create poems so bad they thud. The first line must be a name. The second line can be as long or as short as you wish. The third line must sound the same as the first line, using the name as a verb or some other part of speech.  POE   Text file  Jessica Mathews  Text file 
October 8, 1995 134  A SIMPLE CLERIHEW ERROR  Revive clerihews. A clerihew is a biographical poem in four lines divided into two rhyming couplets. The rhyme scheme is aa bb. The first line of the clerihew must contain the name of the subject of the poem. The lines must be of disparate meter, the clunkier the better.  POE   Text file  Jerry Belenker  Text file 
December 10, 1995 143  IT'S MY PARODY (& I'LL TRY IF I WANT TO)  Rewrite any common jingle or theme song in the style of famous writer.  POE   Text file | Post PDF  David "Stockton" Smith  Text file | Post PDF 
May 19, 1996 166  DOO WAH DOODY  We are looking for really bad lyrics to real rock songs. Your lyrics must be from a reasonably popular song, and you must include the name of the singer or songwriter.  POE MUS   Text file  Carolyn Armstrong
Scott Barney
Don Beale
Dave Ferry
Jane Hanna
Jessica Mathews
Dean Meservy
Arthur J. Murphy
Steve Rouzer
Sandy Tenenbaum
Jeff Wadler
Pam Wadler 
Text file 
May 26, 1996 167  CRAPSEY  Resurrect the "cinquain," a long-deceased poetic form, poems so ickily precocious and pretentious they make haiku look like Kipling. There are five lines, the first containing two syllables, the second containing four syllables, the third six, the fourth eight and the last, with grave finality and thunderous drama, only two. Your subject matter must be suitable for the 1990s.  POE   Text file  Christine Tabbert  Text file 
June 30, 1996 172  POEDTRY  An entire poetic form, making its global debut in the Style Invitational. The first line must contain only six words of one syllable each; the second line, three words of two syllables each; the third line, two words of three syllables each, and the final line a single word of six syllables. At least two lines must rhyme. The general subject matter should be mundane.  POE   Text file | Post PDF  Roger L. Browdy  Text file | Post PDF 
August 18, 1996 179  A CLOCKWORK, UM, UM, ... ER  Write single sentences containing no fewer than three examples of rhyming slang.  POE   Text file  Roy Ashley
Russell Beland
Kevin Cuddihy
Richard DeMello
Stephen Dudzik
Tom Green
Mark Greenblatt
Tommy Litz
Jonathan Paul 
Text file 
September 15, 1996 183  COCKNEY RHYMING SLANG II  Create hawkers' rhymes for modern-day occupations like lobbyists, lawyers, talk show hosts, actuaries, etc., at a maximum of four lines. It must contain at least one rhyme.  POE   Text file  Elden Carnahan  Text file 
February 2, 1997 203  CAN IT GET MUCH VERSE?  Create Very Bad Poetry, containing banalities masquerading as profundities, overstretched metaphors, etc. Special attention should be paid to dreadful syntax and painful rhyme  POE   Text file  Charlie Steinhice  Text file 
June 8, 1997 221  SONG SUNG BROWN  Pick any song, pick a well-known line, and give us the discarded first draft. If it is part of a rhyme, you must maintain the rhyme.  POE MUS   Text file  Lily Fu Swenson  Text file 
November 9, 1997 243  VERSE THAN EVER  Write a rhyming poem of two to eight lines as a tribute to someone famous who died in 1997, the more awful the better. We will particularly value rhymes that thud, and extremes of emotion and sentiment.  POE   Text file  Charlie Steinhice  Text file 
May 17, 1998 270  PALINODE--HAVE PUN, WILL TRAVEL  Write a "palinode", retracting something said in an earlier poem. Your poem must be four lines long and contain at least one rhyme.  POE   Text file  Jon Chananie  Text file 
June 21, 1998 275  THERE ONCE WAS CONTEST FROM NANTUCKET …  Write a limerick in which the first line is about someone who comes from some place in the Washington area.  LIM WAS POE   Text file  Courtney Knauth  Text file 
July 19, 1998 279  TREACLE-DOWN THEORY  Come up with a treacly and deeply moving piece of crap. It must somehow mine joy and goopy inspiration from the vicissitudes of life. It must also rhyme.  POE   Text file  Niels Hoven  Text file 
October 25, 1998 293  THE VERSE OF AMERICA  Take any story in today's Washington Post and create a poem or song by stringing together various phrases from that story. Each phrase must be a least two words long.  POE   Text file  Greg Arnold  Text file 
January 31, 1999 307  IF YOU BOYCOTT THIS TASK / YOU WON'T WIN THE FLASK  Come up with rhyming couplets to warn us about the perils of modern life.  POE CUL   Text file  Howard Walderman  Text file 
February 7, 1999 308  GIVE US NO MO  Write an updated version of those old children's selecting rhymes. Your rhyme must (1) rhyme and (2) conform, at least loosely, to a point-and-shoot cadence that permits the elimination of one item from a group.  POE   Text file  David Genser  Text file 
March 28, 1999 315  FERMENTING TROUBLE  Write a rhyming poem, eight lines maximum, on the subject of cheese or any of the provided items.  POE   Text file  Niels Hoven  Text file 
June 6, 1999 325  THE BURMA ROAD  Propose welcoming doggerel for states or cities patterned after Burma Shave signs.  POE   Text file  Stephen Dudzik  Text file 
May 14, 2000 349
(XVI) 
Orienting Oneself  Produce a haiku using only words found in today's Washington Post. Your entry must have three lines, the first containing exactly five syllables, the second containing exactly seven syllables, the third containing exactly five.  POE   Text file | Post PDF  David Genser  Text file | Post PDF 
September 3, 2000 365
(XXXII) 
Terse Verse  Ask a question and then answer it with a rhyme. Your answer can be as many words as you wish, but all must have the same rhyme.  POE   Text file  David Genser  Text file 
March 18, 2001 393
(LX) 
Things Could Be Verse  Take any story in today's Washington Post and rewrite it into a rhyming poem of no more than eight lines.  POE   Text file  Geoff Shafer
Lindsay Shafer 
Text file 
October 21, 2001 424
(XCI) 
Osama Chanted Evening  Write poems about Osama bin Laden.  POE   Text file  Patricia Helmetag  Text file 
March 24, 2002 446
(CXIII) 
Poems Where the Heart Is  Take any recent news event and summarize it in a rhyming poem of eight lines or fewer.  POE   Text file  Jennifer Hart  Text file 
May 12, 2002 453
(CXX) 
Haiku 2 U2  Write a haiku summarizing the career of any American politician, living or dead. A haiku is generally defined as a nonrhyming poem, of three lines. The first and last lines are five syllables; the middle line is seven.  POE POL   Text file  Daniel Horner  Text file 
September 8, 2002 470
(CXXXVII) 
Czar Har  Take the name of someone famous, rhyme it with a product, and describe the unholy union.  POE   Text file  Brendan Beary  Text file 
February 23, 2003 494
(CLXI) 
Quote-idian  Take any extremely banal piece of familiar writing and rewrite it in the style of a famous writer, poet or lyricist.  LIT POE   Text file  Jeff Brechlin  Text file 
April 27, 2003 503  Doody and Muldoon  Write poetry that out-Muldoons Paul Muldoon, the Princeton professor who won this year's Pulitzer Prize in poetry. Your poem must be a single quatrain, containing at least one rhyme and references to at least two body parts and one geographic name.  POE   Text file  Chris Doyle  Text file 
June 8, 2003 509  Be a Real Card  Come up with a greeting card rhyme for an un-greeting-card occasion.  POE   Text file  Joe Cackler  Text file 
October 26, 2003 529  United We Stanza  Summarize in four rhyming lines of verse any famous document, theory, principle or speech.  POE   Text file | Post PDF  Brendan Beary  Text file | Post PDF 
January 4, 2004 539  Dead Letters  Pay tribute in verse to someone who died in 2003.  POE   Text file | Post PDF  Bob Dalton  Text file | Post PDF 
February 8, 2004 544  You Gotta Have Heart  Write us some valentine sentiments from one particular person (real or fictional) to another.  POE   Text file  Chris Doyle  Text file 
July 4, 2004 565  Anthem Is as Anthem Does  Give us a verse for an alternative U.S. national anthem, set to any well-known tune.  POE   Text file  Chris Doyle  Text file 
August 8, 2004 570  Timeline Rhyme Lines  Produce colorful chronological couplets about some historical event. They must rhyme and be in good meter.  HIS POE   Text file  Russell Beland  Text file 
August 22, 2004 572  The Limerixicon  Supply a limerick based on any word in the dictionary (except proper nouns) beginning with ai- through ar-.  LIM POE   Text file | Post e-version  Brendan Beary  Text file | Post e-version 
August 29, 2004 573  Thine Ad Goest Here  Propose biblical and other literary passages, poems, etc., that could benefit from product placement.  POE REL LIT BUS   Text file  Peter Metrinko  Text file 
October 31, 2004 582  Perversery Rhymes  Update a nursery rhyme or children's song with an edgier text.  POE   Text file  Joseph Romm  Text file 
November 21, 2004 585  It's Parody Time  Offer, in the holiday spirit of goodwill, some advice--as constructive and unifying as Loserly suggestions always are--to our nation's leaders (or the loyal opposition) as we prepare for the next four years. This advice will be set to the tune of some winter holiday song, either religious or secular.  POE   Text file  Barb Sarshik  Text file 
January 2, 2005 591  Dead Letters  Write rhyming poems about notable personages who have died in the past year.  POE EPI   Text file  Brendan Beary  Text file 
April 17, 2005 606  The News Could be Verse  Translate the fine prose of Washington Post articles into verse. Choose any article appearing in The Post of on its Web site from April 17 through April 25.  POE   Text file  Brendan Beary  Text file 
July 10, 2005 618  Of D.C. I Sing  Give us a song about Washington, set to a recognizable tune.  POE MUS   Text file  Barb Sarshik  Text file 
July 17, 2005 619  WordCount Us In  Write a poem of no more than four lines containing four or more consecutive words on the WordCount list. They must occur in the sentence in the order they appear on the list.  POE WOR   Text file  Michelle Stupak  Text file 
August 21, 2005 624  Limerixicon 2  Supply a limerick based on any word in the dictionary (except proper nouns) beginning with bd- through bl-.  LIM POE   Text file  Chris Doyle  Text file 
September 11, 2005 627  Per-Verse  Write a limerick or other short poem with comically awful rhyming.  LIM POE   Text file  Jesse Frankovich  Text file 
November 13, 2005 636  A Song From Tex Arcana  Write a verse of a song about sea urchin sushi or any of the other provided ostensibly unlyrical topics.  POE MUS   Text file  Brendan Beary  Text file 
January 1, 2006 643  The Post's Mortems  Give us a rhyming poem about some notable who died in 2005.  POE EPI   Text file  Brendan Beary  Text file 
January 15, 2006 645  A Hearty Har Har  Write up a Valentine's sentiment to any personage, or to someone in some generic category.  POE   Text file  Kevin Dopart
Chris Doyle 
Text file 
February 12, 2006 649  Across the Wide What?  Give us some Virginia-appropriate lyrics for "Shenandoah."  POE MUS   Text file  Chris Doyle  Text file 
March 26, 2006 655  Laughing Inside  Take any article appearing in The Washington Post or online on washingtonpost.com from today through April 3 -- the more serious and/or mundane its headline, the better -- and write a funny poem or other passage using only words that appear in that article.  POE   Text file  Chris Doyle  Text file 
April 23, 2006 659  Tell Us a Fib  Compose a six-line poem with the following number of syllables per line: 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8. It must be about a person or topic currently in the news, and two successive lines must rhyme.  POE CUL   Text file  Brendan Beary  Text file 
August 6, 2006 674  Limerixicon 3  Supply a humorous limerick based on any word in the dictionary (except proper nouns) beginning with ca-.  LIM LET POE   Text file  Chris Doyle  Text file 
August 27, 2006 677  The News Gets Verse  Sum up wittily in verse -- but not a limerick -- any article appearing in The Post or on washingtonpost.com from Aug. 28 through Sept. 4.  POE LIM   Text file  David "Stockton" Smith  Text file 
September 3, 2006 678  Limerick Smackdown!  Chris Doyle and Brendan Beary will go head to head in a series of 10 limericks.  LIM POE   Text file     
September 24, 2006 681  Ticket to Write  Write a jingle for a business (or its product), organization or government agency, set to a Beatles song.  POE BUS POL MUS   Text file  Jay Shuck  Text file 
December 31, 2006 695  Dead Letters  Write a poem about someone who died in 2006.  POE EPI   Text file  Chris Doyle  Text file 
June 3, 2007 716  The Hard Spell  Write a humorous poem featuring one of the 75 words we've selected from this year's National Spelling Bee.  POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Brendan Beary  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
July 1, 2007 720  The Course of Humor Events  Sum up a historical event in a two-line rhyme or other clever and pithy epigram.  POE HIS   Text file  Chris Doyle  Text file 
July 29, 2007 724  Abridged Too Far  Sum up a book, play or movie in a humorous rhyming verse of two to four lines.  POE LIT MOV   Text file  Ellen Raphaeli  Text file 
August 12, 2007 726  Limerixicon 4  Supply a humorous limerick based on any word in the dictionary beginning with cl- through co-.  LIM POE   Text file  Chris Strolin  Text file 
October 6, 2007 734  Turnaround Time  Write a rhyming couplet containing two words that are anagrams of each other.  POE ANA   Text file  Brendan Beary  Text file 
October 27, 2007 737  No River, No Woods  Send us a funny parody of a well-known song, with lyrics that commemorate an occasion other than Christmas or Hanukkah.  POE HIS   Text file  Brendan Beary  Text file 
January 12, 2008 748  Dead Letters  Write a humorous poem about a well-known personage who died in 2007.  POE EPI   Text file  Brendan Beary  Text file 
March 22, 2008 757  Gorey Thoughts From A to Z  Send us some rhyming alphabet-primer couplets.  POE LET   Text file  Beth Baniszewski  Text file 
May 17, 2008 765  It's Doo-Dah Day  Write humorous lyrics commemorating any of the 50 states of the District, set to any of these Stephen Foster songs.  POE POL   Text file  Barry Koch  Text file 
August 9, 2008 777  Limerixicon 5  Supply a humorous limerick featuring any English word, name or term beginning with the letters da-.  LIM POE   Text file  Chris Doyle  Text file 
October 4, 2008 785  The Ballad Box  Write a short, humorous song somehow relating to the presidential campaign, set to a familiar tune.  POE POL   Text file  Andy Pike
Barb Sarshik 
Text file 
January 3, 2009 798  Dead Letters  Write a humorous poem commemorating someone who died in 2008.  POE EPI   Text file  Jeff Brechlin  Text file 
March 14, 2009 808  Take Us At Our Words  Create a humorous poem or other writing using only the words contained in this week's Style Invitational column or results.  POE WOR STY   Text file  Russell Beland  Text file 
June 27, 2009 823  Wryku  Compose a humorous (or at least wry or clever) haiku.  POE   Text file | Post PDF  Dave Zarrow  Text file | Post PDF 
July 11, 2009 825  Disinstrumentals  Write some words to music that has no words.  POE MUS   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Chris Doyle  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
August 8, 2009 829  Limerixicon 6  Supply a humorous limerick prominently featuring any English word, name or term beginning with the letters di-.  LIM WOR LET POE   Text file | Post e-version  Andrew Burnet  Text file | Post e-version 
November 14, 2009 843  Prefrains  Provide a sentence or two of lead-in to the first line of a well-known book, poem, or song.  LIT MUS POE   Text file  Stephen Dudzik  Text file 
January 2, 2010 850  Dead letters  Write a humorous poem about someone who died in 2009.  POE EPI   Text file  Brendan Beary  Text file 
February 6, 2010 855  The news could be verse  Sum up an article (or even an ad!) in any Washington Post print or online edition from Feb. 6 through Feb. 15 in verse.  POE WAS   Text file  David "Stockton" Smith  Text file 
March 27, 2010 862  Be cheerful  Send us a cheer or fight song for any pro sports team or any national team.  POE MUS ATH   Text file     
July 3, 2010 876  Oilies but goodies  Write lyrics somehow related to the oil spill, set to an existing tune.  POE MUS   Text file  Mae Scanlan  Text file 
July 10, 2010 877  Quipped from the headlines  Write a rhyming couplet about some matter in the news.  POE CUL   Text file  Brendan Beary  Text file 
August 14, 2010 882  Limerixicon VII  Supply a humorous limerick prominently featuring any English word, name or term beginning with the letters dr-.  LIM LET POE   Text file  Carole Lyons
 
Text file (pub 9-11-10)
Text file (pub 9-25-10) 
September 25, 2010 887  Plus-Fours  Write a limerick whose third or fourth line is one of those listed above.  LIM POE   Text file  Stephen Gold  Text file 
January 1, 2011 901  Dead Letters  Write a humorous poem about someone who died in 2010.  POE EPI   Text file | Post e-version  Christopher Lamora  Text file | Post e-version 
May 1, 2011 917  Wryku  Write a haiku--a sentiment that can be broken into three lines with exactly five syllables in the first line, seven in the second, five in the third--on any subject that's been in the news in the last couple of weeks.  POE CUL   Text file  Danny Bravman  Text file 
May 29, 2011 921  Give Us Willies  Write an original Little Willie poem, perhaps reflecting our current era. This is a venerable four-line genre in which Master W. does some nasty thing and doesn't tend to learn to be a Good Boy by poem's end.  POE   Text file | Post e-version  Kevin Dopart  Text file | Post e-version 
June 5, 2011 922  A Banner Week  Write entirely new, humorous lyrics to the tune of “The Star-Spangled Banner”; they can be on any subject.  POE   Text file  Gary Crockett  Text file 
July 10, 2011 927  Drive-By Shoutings  Write a very short four-line “poem” promoting a product or company, or offering advice to drivers; the poem must rhyme, in ABAB or ABCB rhyme scheme. A fifth, non-rhyming line may state the product name or a conclusion.  POE BUS   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Beverley Sharp  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
August 7, 2011 931  Limerixicon 8  Supply a humorous limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term beginning with the letters ea- through -el.  LIM POE   Text file | Post e-version  Chris Doyle  Text file | Post e-version 
September 4, 2011 935  The 400 blows  Write a humorous poem--choose your form--about the Virginia earthquake, Hurricane Irene or another well-known natural event.  POE CUL   Text file  Matt Monitto  Text file 
September 25, 2011 938  Free and Lear  Write a limerick using the first two lines of any of Edward Lear's 115 limericks plus your own remaining three lines.  LIM POE   Text file | Post e-version  Hugh Thirlway  Text file | Post e-version 
January 1, 2012 952  Dead Letters  Write a humorous poem about someone who died in 2011.  POE EPI   Text file  Stephen Gold  Text file 
May 6, 2012 970  Couple it  Take a line from any well-known poem and pair it with your own second line to make a humorous couplet.  POE LIT   Text file | Post e-version  Brendan Beary  Text file | Post e-version 
June 3, 2012 974  Eat our dust!  Write a limerick humorously describing a book, play, movie, or TV show.  LIM LIT TEL MOV POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Chris Doyle
 
Text file | Post PDF (pub 7-1-12)
Text file (pub 8-19-12) 
July 1, 2012 978  A reason to rhyme the news  Write a short verse about something that's been in the news recently.  POE CUL   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
August 5, 2012 982  The parody line  Set your own, humorous words to the tune of a well-known song--except that you must preserve one of the original lines.  POE MUS   Text file | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post e-version 
August 12, 2012 983  Limerixicon IX  Supply a humorous limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term beginning with the letters "eq-" through "ez-".  LIM LET POE   Text file | Post PDF  Brendan Beary  Text file | Post PDF 
October 21, 2012 993  Versus, verses  Write a short "rap battle" between any two characters, real or fictional.  POE   Text file  Amanda Yanovitch  Text file 
January 6, 2013 1004  Dead letters  Write a humorous poem about anyone who died in 2012.  POE EPI   Text file | Post e-version  Robert Schechter
Nan Reiner 
Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
March 10, 2013 1012  The news at 5  Write a limerick about a recent news event.  LIM CUL POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Kevin Dopart  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
May 26, 2013 1023  Hai there, Martians!  Write one or more humorous haiku that will greet the Martians or share a little nugget of what life is like on Earth.  POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Rob Huffman  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
June 2, 2013 1024  Gorey thoughts  Send us some edgy rhyming alphabet-primer couplets. The pairs are AB, CD, EF, GH, IJ, KL, MN, OP, QR, ST, UV, WX, and YZ.  LET POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Jennifer Gittins-Harfst  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
July 14, 2013 1029  Ditty Harry  Write a descriptive theme song for a well-known movie, set to a well-known tune.  MOV MUS POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Mark Raffman  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
July 21, 2013 1030  The cinquain feeling  Write a clever cinquain. The five-line form is straightforward: first line, two syllables; second line, four syllables; third line, six; fourth line, eight; fifth line, two.  POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
August 11, 2013 1033  LimeriXicon  Supply a humorous limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term beginning with "fa-".  LIM POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Matt Monitto  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
September 22, 2013 1039  Shookespeare  Combine any of the words in Hamlet's "To be, or not to be" soliloquy, in any order, to create a humorous sentence or longer passage.  WOR POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Craig Dykstra  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
January 5, 2014 1054  Dead letters  Write a short, humorous poem commemorating someone (or maybe even something) who died in 2013.  EPI POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Gary Crockett  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
March 2, 2014 1062  Scanning the headlines  Write a rhyming poem about something currently in the news.  POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Chris Doyle
 
Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version (pub 3-30-14)
Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version (pub 4-27-14) 
April 27, 2014 1069  It's a small, small world  Write a humorous poem of no more than eight lines -- it doesn't have to rhyme -- using only the top 1,000 words on Wiktionary.org's list of the most common among 20 million words found in movie and TV scripts.  POE WOR   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Ward Kay
Mark Raffman 
Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
June 1, 2014 1074  Let's go parody-hopping  Describe a stage or movie musical in a parody of a song from a different musical.  POE MOV   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
July 6, 2014 1079  Little piddle riddle  Ask a question and answer it with a rhyme.  POE QUE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Rachel A. Bernhardt  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
July 13, 2014 1080  McGonagall with the windiness  Memorialize a modern "tragedy" in a poem burdened with hilariously overwrought verse; lame, forced rhymes; and painfully uneven meter. Get the badness across in one verse of no more than eight lines. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Thomas Blain  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
August 10, 2014 1084  Limerixicon XI: Fi-, fo-, go!  Supply a humorous, previously unpublished limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term beginning with "Fl-" through "fo-". (Conversational textLIM POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Brendan Beary  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
September 21, 2014 1090  Talk undirty to us  Write a humorous poem in any form (no more than eight lines) that includes one or more of the provided words; the word must make sense in the poem in its TRUE meaning. (Conversational textWOR POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Danielle Nowlin  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
October 26, 2014 1095  TankaWanka!  Write a TankaWanka about something that's been in the news lately. The poem must consist of five lines of 5, 7, 5, 7 and 7 syllables in that order. And it must include at least one rhyme. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
January 4, 2015 1105  A lit obit of fun  Write a humorous poem of no longer than eight lines about someone who died in 2014. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Chris Doyle  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
January 25, 2015 1108  Hearts of dorkness  Write a humorous Valentine's Day sentiment to someone (or to some organization), either real or fictional -- either from you or from someone else you name. Plus an all-new option: We'll also be willing to run at least one really funny, clever, well-executed graphic. (Conversational textPOE ART   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Rob Huffman  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
March 1, 2015 1113  Our occasional parodies  Write a song celebrating someone's birthday or other personal occasion (rather than, say, a holiday), set to a familiar tune. (Conversational textMUS POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
May 17, 2015 1124  Heed! Indeed: Advice verse  Write one of the provided reminders as a humorous poem of eight lines or fewer.  POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Frank Osen  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
June 21, 2015 1129  Right in the pampootie  Write a humorous short poem (eight lines or fewer) incorporating one of the 50 provided words. (Conversational textPOE WOR   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Chris Doyle  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
July 19, 2015 1133  Are 'hew ready? A contest for clerihews  A clerihew is a humorous four-line rhyming poem about a person whose name is mentioned in the first line; in fact, the name must be at the end of that line (or constitute the whole line) so that it has to rhyme with something. The rhyme structure (and we don't want "lazy" rhymes) is AABB: the first line rhymes with the second, the third with the fourth. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Brendan Beary  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
August 16, 2015 1136  Gaah! It's Limerixicon XII  Supply a humorous, previously unpublished limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term beginning with "ga-". (Conversational textPOE LIM   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
November 8, 2015 1148  It's TankaWanka II  Write a TankaWanka about something that's been in the news lately. The poem must consist of five lines of 5, 7, 5, 7 and 7 syllables in that order. And it must include at least one rhyme. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
December 20, 2015 1154  Tabby Road -- songs for cats  Write a song for -- or about -- cats or other animals, set to a familiar tune. (Conversational textMUS POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Stephen Gold  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
January 3, 2016 1156  Dead letters  Write a humorous poem of no longer than eight lines about someone who died in 2015. (Conversational textPOE EPI   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Kathy Fraeman  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
April 17, 2016 1171  What's my (next) line?  Take a line from any song and pair it with your own second line to make a humorous rhyming couplet; the second line should match the rhythm of the first, rather than the second line of the song itself. (Conversational textMUS POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Jesse Etelson  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
June 26, 2016 1181  Put it in Bee-verse  Write a short, humorous poem using one of the 36 provided words, all from the 2016 National Spelling Bee. (Conversational textPOE WOR   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Chris Doyle  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
July 31, 2016 1186  We're always happy to verse you   Write a humorous poem, of any form, about or “by” the anagram of anyone’s name.   POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Jesse Frankovich  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
August 21, 2016 1189  Gee, it's Limerixicon XIII!  Supply a humorous, previously unpublished limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term beginning with "ge". (Conversational textLIM POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Melissa Balmain  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
September 18, 2016 1193  Poedtry  Write a Poed, which consists of four lines: The first line contains six one-syllable words. The second line contains three two-syllable words. The third line contains two three-syllable words. The fourth line contains one six-syllable word (or a name totaling six syllables.  And at least two of the lines must rhyme. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Gary Crockett  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
November 20, 2016 1202  Don't be afraid of the dark  Write lyrics to a song that, in some way, express hope. (Conversational textPOE MUS   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
January 1, 2017 1208  A RIP-roaring year: Obit poems  Write a humorous poem of no longer than eight lines about someone who died in 2016. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Melissa Balmain  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
February 5, 2017 1213  Punku  Write a haiku that incorporates a pun.  POE WOR   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Jesse Frankovich  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
March 19, 2017 1219  Cast your Bred upon us  Write a Lik the Bred verse about someone in the news lately. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  David "Charlestown" Lewis  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
May 28, 2017 1229  Gorey bits from A to Z  Send us one of more edgy rhyming alphabet-primer couplets. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Stephen Gold
Maria Zimmerman 
Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
June 11, 2017 1231  TankaWanka 3: Haiku Plus Tu  Write a TankaWanka about something that's been in the news lately. The poem must consist of five lines of 5, 7, 5, 7 and 7 syllables in that order. And at least two of the lines must rhyme. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
July 9, 2017 1235  The Sound of Science  Write humorous lyrics on the subject of science or technology, set to a well-known tune. (Conversational textPOE SCI   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Hildy Zampella  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
August 13, 2017 1240  We GIVE you Limerixicon XIV  Supply a humorous, previously unpublished limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term beginning with "gh-" or "gi-". (Conversational textLIM POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Ann Martin  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
October 22, 2017 1250  Poems of the year(s)  Write a humorous poem incorporating three or more terms from a particular year or era listed on Time Traveler. (Conversational textPOE WOR   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Mark Raffman  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
January 7, 2018 1261  Post mortems -- our annual obit poem contest  Write a humorous poem of no longer than eight lines about someone who died in 2017. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Duncan Stevens  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
February 4, 2018 1265  Parody for the course  Write a song relating to a class or course of instruction, or to school in general. (Conversational textMUS POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
March 11, 2018 1270  The Style Invitational turns 5 x 5  Write a witty poem, on any subject, in any of these forms:
A. Five lines of five syllables each
B. Five lines of five words each
C. Five lines of iambic pentameter (Conversational text
POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Frank Osen  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
April 22, 2018 1276  What 4? A limerick contest  Use a limerick using one of the provided lines as Line 5.  LIM POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Frank Osen  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
June 10, 2018 1283  Put it in Bee-verse  Write a humorous poem of eight lines or fewer that includes one of the provided words, all from the 2018 National Spelling Bee. (Conversational textPOE WOR   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Mark Raffman  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
July 8, 2018 1287  It's parody time: Oldies for newsies  Write some song lyrics about something in the news these days, set to a familiar tune. (Conversational textMUS POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
August 12, 2018 1292  Golly gosh, it's Limerixicon XV  Supply a humorous, previously unpublished limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term, beginning with "gl-" through "go-". (Conversational textLIM POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Brendan Beary  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
September 9, 2018 1296  A, we're Adorbs: New-word poems  Use one or more of these words new to M-W.com in a humorous poem of eight lines max. (Conversational textWOR POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Mark Raffman  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
October 14, 2018 1301  Tell us a Fib(onacci)  Write a humorous poem of 20 syllables divided among six lines like this: 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8. And a least two -- any two -- of the lines must rhyme. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Duncan Stevens  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
January 6, 2019 1313  Dead Letters -- our obit poem contest  Write a poem of no longer than eight lines about someone who died in 2018.  POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Robert Schechter  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
February 3, 2019 1317  Punku 2: Haiku with puns  Create a haiku containing a pun or similar wordplay.  POE WOR   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Frank Osen  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
May 19, 2019 1332  We'll call them Spellimericks  Write a humorous limerick that's an acrostic: a pertinent five-letter word or name spelled out by the first letter of each line.  LIM LET POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Hildy Zampella  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
June 9, 2019 1335  Put it in bee-verse! Or . . .   Write a humorous poem of eight lines or fewer that includes at least one of the provided words, used in Round 9 or later of this year's Scripps National Spelling Bee; OR: write a joke in Q&A form that uses at least one of the words.  WOR POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Jesse Frankovich  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
July 7, 2019 1339  Songs for a modern error  Write humorous lyrics about some modern woe, set to a familiar tune. (Conversational textPOE MUS   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Duncan Stevens  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
August 11, 2019 1344  Well, that's just great -- It’s Limerixicon XVI  Supply a humorous, previously unpublished limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term beginning with "gr-".  LIM LET WOR POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Mark Raffman  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
September 22, 2019 1350  Here's inspo for new-word poems  Write a poem of eight lines or fewer featuring one or more of these recent additions to m-w.com.  POE WOR   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Brendan Beary  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
January 5, 2020 1365  Dead Letters, our obit poem contest  Write a poem of eight lines or fewer (plus an optional title) about someone who died in 2019. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Chris Doyle  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
February 23, 2020 1372  Trash talking, 1880-style  Write a quatrain or -- heck -- two of Balliol rhyme about some person. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Nan Reiner  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
March 8, 2020 1374  Versus' verses in a rap battle  Write a mini-"rap" between any two characters, real or fictional, as in the provided ERB example. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Gary Crockett  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
June 21, 2020 1389  TankaWanka 4: Haiku plus tu  Write a TankaWanka about something that's been in the news lately. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Mark Raffman  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
August 9, 2020 1396  Hail Limerixicon XVII: Write a limerick featuring a 'ha-' word  Supply a humorous, previously unpublished limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term beginning with "ha-". (Conversational text) (Limerick GuideLIM POE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version  Melissa Balmain  Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version 
September 13, 2020 1401  How hai? A joke-haiku contest  Write a joke (roughly) in the "It's so xxx" genre as a haiku. (Conversational textPOE   Text file | Post PDF | Post e-version