Thanks to calculating upstart and hero-boy Ed DeCaria, 64 children's poets are going head to head in the first ever Think Kid, Think! Poetry Tournament. I'm in the second flight of the first round and will shortly know which devilishly difficult 14th seed word I'm supposed to compose around.
The criteria for judging each poem are as follows:
"Voters can use whatever criteria they’d like when determining their preferred poem from each pair. As a random guideline, consider the criteria on which the contestants on the cooking show “Chopped” are evaluated: presentation, taste, and creativity. Translated roughly into poetry terms, presentation might include technical aspects such as meter, rhyme, form/shape, etc.; taste might be the net effect — did the poem move you to laugh, cry, think, kill, etc.; and creativity might include the poet’s approach toward a certain subject, image evocation, clever wordplay, etc."
Yes, folks, it's like American Idol: YOU, the discerning public, get to pick which poem in each match-up cuts the mustard. Go to the Live Scoreboard to see what the first flight of poets is feverishly working on even as I type. Then go back to vote for your favorites.
Wishing the best to all competitors...