Poetry by the Sea

a global conference & community

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Poetry by the Sea Conference 2024!
Tuesday May 21 to Friday May 24

Mercy Conference Center in Madison, Connecticut

"This was my first time attending the conference, and I felt so welcomed. The panels were outstanding--better than I have attended at the dozens of conferences and festivals I have attended over the years. The folks were so bright and informed and generous. I loved it, truly."
--Adam Vines, editor of The Birmingham Review

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Poetry by the Sea is a community of poets and educators committed to diversity, inclusiveness, and mutual respect in the pursuit of artistic excellence and creative growth. The yearly Conference, held in May, welcomes poets of all backgrounds in an environment that values and supports each person’s unique contribution and voice. Our picturesque retreat setting on the Connecticut shore facilitates an easy exchange of ideas among attendees, faculty, and guest speakers, and is an ideal locale for creative inspiration.

Our Program

Conference attendees participate in workshops and attend panel discussions, readings, lectures, catered receptions, and a banquet. Workshops range from three-day intensives on craft techniques such as creative approaches to form, to two-day workshops on subjects such as theme poems, and one-day workshops on topics such as developing a creative practice and assembling a chapbook.

Noted Keynote Speakers and Spotlight Readers include former U.S. Poet Laureate Rita Dove as well as Kevin Young, Marilyn Hacker, Marilyn Chin, Richie Hofmann, John Poch, and Adrian Matejka. Past lecturers include 2023 Oxford Professor of Poetry A. E. Stallings, Don Share, Ange Mlinko, and Jehanne Dubrow.

Attendees take meals together with faculty and guest poets in an informal lunchroom setting and have the choice of boarding on site or at local hotels. Participants can also sign up to read their work at daily Participant Readings sessions and to sell their poetry books in our dedicated on-site book room. Evening readings by our acclaimed faculty are also open to non-Conference attendees from the local community.  

Learn More

The 2024 Conference runs, in person, from Tuesday May 21, to Friday May 24. Sign up for the PBTS Blog to find out about Keynote Speakers, featured Spotlight Readers, Guest Lecturers, and faculty. Registration opens in January. Join us!

To find out about our sonnet and book contests, click here. To read about our scholarship opportunities, click here. For more about the history of Poetry by the Sea and Kim Bridgford, the Conference founder, click here.

What’s Happening

How to get involved in the PBTS Community

1. Subscribe to our blog

Subscribe to our blog to stay up to date on everything. 

2. View our YouTube Channel

Our YouTube channel includes various videos from over the years.

3. Follow and tag us on social media

We’re a global community and social media is one of the easiest ways to keep in touch! Engage with us on Facebook, Instagram, and X (formerly Twitter).

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