The Blog of Toledo Lucas County Public Library

Enter Now! 2018 Ode to the Zip Code

Posted about 1 month ago by Jan C

Posted in Fiction, Literature, Poetry & Graphic Novels and Programs | Tagged with Fair Housing Month, National Poetry Month, poetry contest and zip codes

When is a zip code more than a zip code? When it’s an Ode to the Zip Code. The third annual Ode to the Zip Code poetry contest, a partnership of The Fair Housing Center, The Arts Commission, Toledo Lucas County Public Library, and Toledo City Paper, is underway and contest entries are now being accepted online through March 7 on the Toledo City Paper website.

This is your opportunity to submit short poems inspired by your ZIP Code, where the number of words in each line of the poem is determined by the corresponding digit of the ZIP Code. Take last year’s winner, by Lydia Horvath, for example:

4 Near Detroit and Airport
3 We finally settled
6 Family of six, crowding into rentals
0 (here's where I won't discuss the summer we were homeless)
9 But there on Somerset, my very own pink bedroom

New to the contest this year is a youth category, so those 15 and under can submit their ode and compete for special recognition. Kids, here’s your chance to tell us all about your neighborhood!

All entries will be juried, and finalists will be invited to read their work at a special event at the Main Library.

Ode to the Zip Code
Apr. 19 | 5:30 p.m. | Main Library-McMaster Center

Winners selected from both adult and youth categories will be awarded cash prizes. Top entries will be published by Toledo City Paper.

April is Fair Housing Month and National Poetry Month. Ode to the Zip Code is a way for us to talk about our community and how it affects our experiences and opportunities. Inspiration for the contest came from the O, Miami Poetry Festival and WLRN-Miami Herald News, the originators of the “zip ode” concept.

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