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Contest Guidelines

2022 Ekphrastic Poetry Contest

Poets from San Antonio and South Texas are invited enter the 2022 Ekphrastic Poetry Contest by writing poems inspired by selected artworks from five San Antonio arts institutions. There is no entry fee.


What is Ekphrastic Poetry? In simplest terms, an ekphrastic poem is one written in response to another art form:  a visual work of art; a piece of music or dance, etc. For purposes of this National Poetry Month Ekphrastic Poetry Contest, write a response to a visual work of art. Examples of famous ekphrastic poems are: Ode to a Grecian Urn by John Keats; Nine Nectarines and Other Porcelain by Marianne Moore; and The Starry Night by Ann Sexton.


Categories: Adult Category: age 18 or older. Submission Deadline: Midnight, March 23, 2022.

Youth Categories: age 12 and under; OR ages 13-17.  Submission Deadline: Midnight, March 18, 2022.

Artworks: To see artworks, click on the links below or visit the art institutions in person:

The Briscoe Western Art Museum, With No Roof but a Resistol, Bruce Green.

The McNay Art Museum, The Sole Sitter, Willie Cole.

Ruby City, Hub, 3rd Floor, Union Wharf, 23 Wenlock Road, London N1 7ST UK, Do Ho Suh.

San Antonio Museum of Art: Landscape of Four Seasons, Unkoku Togan.

The Witte Museum, Carretta Wheel from a Tejano Freighter.

For Guidelines:  Guidelines & images will be posted at these links:

Arts Alive San Antonio:

Bihl Haus Arts:

Gemini Ink:

San Antonio Public Library:

What to Submit: Submit up to two (2) poems (each poem a maximum of 15 lines plus title) written in response to the art. Please do not simply describe the art; share how the work affects, puzzles, moves, frightens or enlightens you, etc.

How to Submit: Attach one poem per email in a PDF or Microsoft Word doc or docx to Subject line should read: Ekphrastic Poetry Contest Submission – (ADULT or YOUTH), (Title of the Artwork). In the email body: your name, category, city & state, phone and email. Please do not put your name or any identifying info on the poem. Each poem must be sent in a separate email. Deadlines for submission: March 18 for Youth; March 23 for Adults.

Judging: Judges will select up to 3 poems per artwork per category. Adult contest judges: Jim LaVilla- Havelin, 2022 National Poetry Month coordinator, Eddie Vega, poet & Luminaria honoree, and Linda Simone, poet, artist, educator. Youth contest judges: Creative Writers of the Young Women’s Leadership Academy. All winners will be notified via email by March 28th and, upon notification, must attach their winning poem(s) as a PDF in an email to with email subject line: Winning Poem PDF – (ADULT or YOUTH), (Your Name). Winning poems will be posted online throughout April, National Poetry Month.

Artwork for Ekphrastic Poetry Contest - 2022

Briscoe Western Art Museum

Bruce Green (b. 1953),
With No Roof but a Resistol, 1991,
Oil on canvas.

Briscoe Museum Website


The McNay Art Museum

The Sole Sitter

Maker and role
Artist: Willie Cole, American, born 1955

McNay Art Museum Website

Ruby City

Do Ho Suh, Hub, 3rd Floor, Union Wharf, 23 Wenlock Road, London N1 7ST, UK, 2016.

© Do Ho Suh, courtesy Lehmann Maupin, New York, Hong Kong and Seoul. Linda Pace Foundation Collection, Ruby City, San Antonio, Texas

Ruby City Website

San Antonio Museum of Art

Landscape of Four Seasons,

ca. 1600,

Unkoku Tōgan (Japanese, 1547-1618)  

San Antonio Museum of Art Website

Witte Museum

Carretta Wheel from a Tejano Freighter
This carreta wheel (c. late 1880s) was common on freighter carts across the southwest. Imagine a store filled with pots, pans, farm tools, coffee, fabrics toys and various other sundries. Every item arriving to San Antonio via a carreta wheel like the one shown here..

Witte Museum Website