About MPS

The Waterville Poets Club and the Dover-Foxcroft Poetry Circle joined in 1936 to form the Poetry Fellowship of Maine. In 1993, the name was changed to Maine Poets Society to reflect the organization's changing emphasis on a statewide network of writers sharing their work.


The society is affiliated with the National Federation of State Poetry Societies (NFSPS). Maine Poets Society membership fee includes NFSPS membership and allows our members the opportunity to participate in a variety of contests and events each year. For more information, visit NFSPS online at www.nfsps.com.

Who's Who at MPS

Board Members

President’s Message

Life gets busy at this time of year, doesn’t it? No sooner have we got Thanksgiving behind us than we start thinking about Christmas – making special food, putting up decorations, buying and wrapping gifts, and sending cards. Somebody has to deal with all of them, and that somebody is usually you. It doesn’t leave a lot of time for our own particular form of creativity.

In my family, when my children were young, we used to have a tradition of writing cryptic clues on the label for whatever the gift was inside, and if it was something obvious, like a CD or a book, we’d write “It’s an elephant” or “a rhinoceros”. Sadly, now Christmas presents often come in Amazon gift wrap. But we’re all creative people, aren’t we? Why not write a short verse to go with a Christmas present? I now have a tradition of buying my sons socks and underwear as well as anything else, on the grounds that these are things only your mother buys you, and this year I thought I’d accompany them with a verse:

            It’s soft, it’s squishy, and it doesn’t look
            or feel hard-edged – you know it’s not a book.
            It’s not too heavy, so it isn’t rocks.
            Oh yes you guessed it - yet again it’s socks.
            Any disappointment you must smother:
            this comes only from a loving mother.

It’s not great poetry but it might make them smile. Now I must think of one to go with underwear, but that’s harder to rhyme. What rhymes with boxers?

And while you’re thinking of what somebody can buy you for Christmas – why not ask them to pay for the renewal of your membership to Maine Poets Society, due by January 1st? Or for a contribution to membership of the Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance? They are running some splendid courses through the winter – always a great way to sharpen up your work. Don’t forget that you can apply for one of our Opportunity Grants to help you with the cost of those. You can check them out, and the workshops they are offering this winter, on https://www.mainewriters.org/ under “Workshops and Events”. You don’t have to be a member to attend their workshops, but it is a little cheaper if you are.

As another Christmas suggestion, maybe ask for a book of poems you’d like to read? Or give one to somebody else? Let’s spread the joy of poetry and support those who write it. Go one better and buy it from your local independent bookstore.

There are some brilliant poets in Maine, and we are lucky enough to have secured one of the best – former Poet Laureate of Maine Wesley McNair - as the judge for our Prize Poem contest this year. Watch for the announcement of our opening date in January and sharpen up your entries.

I wish all Maine poets and their families the happiest of festive seasons.

Jenny Doughty

 © Maine Poets Society.