DNREC-Sponsored Poetry Contest Seeks Entries Focused on ‘What I Love About the Ocean’

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The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC), is partnering with libraries in each county to conduct a haiku poetry contest. DNREC is seeking entries from individuals who can communicate what they love about the ocean in 17 syllables, spanning three lines of poetry. The contest is in celebration of National Ocean Month coming up in June. The deadline to enter is 4 p.m. June 4th. Complete rules, an entry form and other information is available online at de.gov/ocean575. Winners will be announced on June 8th, World Ocean Day.

Image courtesy of DNREC

Additional Information from DNREC:

According to the Academy of American Poets, a traditional Japanese haiku is a three-line poem with 17 syllables, written in a 5/7/5 syllable count. The academy says the brief poems “often focus on images from nature, while emphasizing simplicity, intensity, and directness of expression.”

“A poetry contest provides an opportunity for creative wordsmiths to shine, and we are thrilled to partner with libraries across Delaware in recognition of the wonders of our ocean as part of National Ocean Month,” said Kristi Lieske, Ocean Planner in DNREC’s Division of Climate, Coastal and Energy.

As a coastal state, Delaware depends on the ocean and marine resources for its economic prosperity, particularly in terms of tourism, commercial fishing, recreation and shipping industries. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Economics: National Ocean Watch data, the total economic value of Delaware’s ocean-related activities is estimated at approximately $1.9 billion annually.

Haikus submitted for the poetry contest should express, in the author’s view, “What I love about the ocean.”

Prizes will be awarded in categories for K-12 (ages 5 through 18) and adult (ages 19 and above). The deadline to enter is 4 p.m. June 4. Complete rules, an entry form and other information is available online at de.gov/ocean575.

Winners will be announced on June 8, World Ocean Day.

Selected poems will be displayed in the following participating libraries throughout the state during Ocean Month in June:

  • Route 9 Library and Innovation Center
  • Appoquinimink Library
  • Dover Public Library
  • Georgetown Public Library
  • Lewes Public Library

Winning pieces will also be displayed at the Delaware State Fair.

The winning poem and poet in each age group category will be featured in an Outdoor Delaware online article. Additionally, each 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winner will receive a DNREC prize pack.


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