Regular Submissions

Thank you for your interest in submitting poems to the BPJ.

We read regular submissions during two open reading periods:

  • Our Winter Open Reading Period runs from January 1 through February 28.
  • Our Summer Open Reading Period runs from June 1 through August 31.

We’re open to a wide range of forms and styles in contemporary poetry. We’re always watching for new poets, quickened language, and work that offers a fresh purchase on the political or social landscape.

The editors read every poem that comes in over the transom. We respond to manuscripts we know aren't for us as soon as we've read them. The rest we circulate among the editorial board members and continue to winnow. At face-to-face, long-weekend-long meetings, we read aloud those poems in which we have strong interest and collaborate to choose an issue from among them.

Note about open reading periods: We can receive 800 fee-free submissions per month. Once we've received 800 in any month of the open reading period, submissions will close until the beginning of the following month. If we reach 800 during the final month of the period, regular submissions will close until our next open reading period.

  • We seek unpublished poems or translations of poems not already available in English. (If you submit translations, please also include the poems in their original language.)
  • We are willing to consider simultaneous submissions, but we ask that you notify us immediately (by leaving us a message in Submittable) if a poem is accepted elsewhere.
  • Limit your submission to five poems OR a single long poem. (Yes, we enjoy long poems!)
  • Submit no more than one manuscript during any submission period.
  • We seek to emphasize the poems themselves, so we use no contributors' notes, but feel free to send us a note if you want to tell us something about yourself.
  • Please wait to query us until four months have passed.
  • Before you send work, please familiarize yourself with the BPJ by buying a current issue or browsing our website archive.