You’ve written a poem, or maybe you’ve written a whole bunch of them. What is your next step? As a poet who is just beginning, or as a student poet with limited time, the prospect of submitting to literary journals may seem daunting.
Stacked with great reads, the journals listed below have unique and robust poetry divisions. As such, it is always a good idea to read over some content from each journal before submitting in order to be sure that your piece is a good fit. Below are some of the best literary magazines to submit to as a student poet, as well as links to their respective submission managers, a poem or two (or more!) to check out, and past issues (when available).
Winter Tangerine was founded in March 2013. They are, in their own words, “dedicated to the electric,” with a strong social mission and projects that have spotlighted mental illness, femininity, and migrant issues. Past special editions have included ‘Reshaping the Bell Jar,’ which focuses on mental illness; and ‘Hands Up Don’t Shoot,’ an exploration of blackness in America. In addition to their politically-fueled, lyrical poetry sections, they also have a variety of internships, fellowships, and events for aspiring poets.
“The Situation Is Gratifying” by Carlina Duan
Tinderbox Poetry Journal is a quarterly publication that is entirely dedicated to poetry and poetry reviews. In addition to their collection of back issues, much can be learned about the craft from their sharp reviews and interviews between poets.
“Once” by Jeni De La O
This biannual print journal features stunning fiction, visual art, and nonfiction, as well as poetry. In the past, it has featured the likes of Sam Sax, Danez Smith, and others. They seek to be a platform for marginalized voices. APOGEE writes in their mission statement that “[t]he word ‘apogee’ denotes the point in an object’s orbit that is farthest from the center. Our mission combines literary aesthetic with political activism.”
“Surrender” by Danez Smith
Muzzle Magazine is an online literary magazine that publishes twice a year, in June and in December. It features poetry and reviews of recently released chapbooks and novels. Poems from Muzzle have been featured in Best American Poetry, The Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net, and Verse Daily. Their section Vital Signs features poets writing about poems that have inspired them.
“The moon is no longer the thing in the sky” by A.R. Zarif
In one of their most recent ‘behind-the-scenes’ updates, former editor-in-chief Chanda Prescod-Weinstein writes, “I urge you to serve our futures by always making time to read, to create first drafts, and to do the hard work of lovingly and critically revising. There are those who seek to destroy us by creating conditions where we never have time or space to be human or acknowledge each other’s humanity. We must thwart them at every turn—whether it is in the streets, at the ballot box, or on the page.” And thwart they do—the Offing’s range of cross-genre pieces is impressive and spans topics from science to fiction and from satire to translation.
“On Hunger” by Hanif Willis-Abdurraqib
Canvas, founded in 2013 in Rochester, New York, has been a premier location for teens to contribute in a variety of genres, including poetry, plays, nonfiction, visual art, and fiction. They publish both online and in-print.
“My WebMD Results” by K.B. Kelso
Liminality is a quarterly online publication of speculative poetry. They state that they are looking for “literary poems that touch the heart as much as the head; poems of the liminal, the fluid, and the fantastic.” If this sounds like your poetry, perhaps Liminality is a good fit for you.
“Beach Community” by Gabriel Ostler
At risk of tooting our own horn(s), The Adroit Journal is always looking for fresh works of poetry (and art and prose, too!). For more about the content Adroit highlights, check out our About page and browse the archives of previously published work. If you would like to improve your work through a critique process that brings together an impressive array of mentorship opportunities, consider an application to the Summer Mentorship Program. Young writers can also inquire about the professional world of writing—a question portal is provided here.
Vagabond City is an online platform that features a variety of work, including nonfiction, fiction, and visual art. As a publication, Vagabond City emphasizes works produced by “marginalized creators.” The Vagabond City blog posts reviews and interviews.
“Anxious Diva” by Hannah Kucharzak