How to Get Your Poems in the Public Domain

Beautiful scene with Sohal Surgeonfish, Acanth...

How to get started submitting your poems
The most rudimentary search online will bring up sites where you can post your poetry and get comments from readers. However, you will be in the company of thousands of other writers worldwide so your work is unlikely to attract more than passing attention. It is worth going to a site such as Duotrope, which lists markets for poetry (and also fiction) together with statistics on issues such as response times, percentage of acceptances. So, a poet just embarking on submitting their work into the public domain may find it helpful to start with publications with the fastest response times or the highest acceptance rates.

Refining the task
You are very likely to receive responses which say something like: “While we enjoyed your work, it is not a good fit for our publication.” However, if you have some talent, you are very likely to start finding internet poetry sites which accept your work. The chances of getting acceptances are greatly increased if you study the sort of poetry which is published by different publications and follow submission guidelines to the letter. For example, a piece written in rhyming couplets is very unlikely to find favour on a site which specifically requests contemporary poetry. Similarly, if a site asks for a maximum length of 50 lines, do not submit a poem which has even one line over the limit. With application and persistence, though, you are very likely to see your poems out there in the public domain for others to read and enjoy.