A graphic of a painting of a breakfast plate with the words Poetic License overlayed.

Call for Entries: Poetic License 2024

“Ekphrastic art” is defined as the response of an artist in one medium to a work of art by an artist in another medium. Its more common manifestation is poetry written about visual art, such as paintings, photographs, drawings, and sculpture. Poetic License is a project that turns that around, giving local visual artists an opportunity to respond to the work of poets.

For the third year, inspired by a project originated by the Poetry Barn and the Arts Society of Kingston, the Hudson Valley Writers Guild and the Upstate Artists Guild are excited to work together again to present this opportunity in 2024 for collaboration between poets and visual artists in the Capital District.


What We Are Looking For

We are looking for poems (or an excerpt from a longer poem) that are image-driven, present a narrative or a written description containing images that arise from our senses, or as poet William Carlos Williams famously said, “No idea but in things.” The images can come from the “real world,” or the world of fantasy, from dreams, be in color or black & white, but the writing should make the reader see, hear, smell, taste, and feel what the poet experienced. Please note we are not looking for ekphrastic poems.

If selected, your poem will be displayed along with the artwork it inspires at an exhibit in the Fall at a venue(s) to be determined. The number of poems selected will be based on the size of the venue and what it can fit in, and not all work selected by the editors may be selected by an artist.



  • Poems must be no more than 150 words and 25 lines long.
  • Poems will be considered, whether they are previously published or unpublished works.
  • Send up to two (2) poems in the body of an email titled “2024 Poetic License.”
  • Include your name, address, email address, and phone number in your email — no bio.
  • Send your email to dwlcx46@gmail.com by midnight EST on May 31, 2024.
  • Judges will be local poets & members of the Hudson Valley Writers Guild.
  • Please note: Your poem may be accepted by the editors but not selected by one of the artists.