Larry Lawrence: Poet Interview

So as promised in the 2013 April PAD Challenge results post, I’m going to start featuring a poem and poet from the Top 25 every Friday between now and the next challenge. The first one to respond was Larry Lawrence, aka @TheAmericanPoet on Twitter.

Larry Lawrence

Larry Lawrence

Larry was born and raised in South Jersey. He left his hometown to attend Rutgers University and studied playwriting at Mason Gross School of the Arts. Currently he teaches Gifted and Talented students in several elementary schools. He has been writing and reading poems for many years. He travels frequently to locations in the Southeastern United States. Being a committed writer, avid father and devoted sports fan are essential to his life. Find him on Twitter @TheAmericanPoet or read more of his work at

Here’s his poem that made the Top 25 list:

Powerless, by Larry Lawrence

The hurricane hits, but without power no one sees
lost lives, streets flood, cars wash away, homes burn.
Darkness across the state, downed wires, fallen trees.
The hurricane hits, but without power no one sees.
No choice as waves rise, the entire neighborhood flees.
It’s dangerous living near water, a hard lesson to learn.
The hurricane hits, but without power no one sees
lost lives, streets flood, cars wash away, homes burn.


Where are you located?

New Jersey.

Who are your favorite poets?

Bukowski, Neruda, and Mary Oliver are my big three.

As a reader, what do you like most in poems?

A poem works for me when I feel myself nodding in agreement with the scenario, the mood, the vibe. Maybe I’m selfish, but I want to relate to the poet’s experience and know how they felt when writing it. I need that connection.

What were your goals for the 2013 April PAD Challenge?

I think the most important thing is not to expect each poem to be a home run. Rather the Challenge for me has always been to get up, get moving and get writing.

What’s next for you?

I wrote on my Twitter page, “getting published one poem at a time.” I truly need to go through the hundreds of pieces I’ve written and make a valiant effort to get a book published.


Get your poetry published!

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Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor for the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and author of Solving the World’s Problems (Press 53). He runs poem-a-day challenges on this blog during the months of April and November. Follow him on Twitter @robertleebrewer.


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7 thoughts on “Larry Lawrence: Poet Interview

  1. Mariya Koleva

    I’m happy to see the first interview is with Larry. Three years ago, we followed each other (I don’t remember who started it) on Twitter and he was part of the reason I am here today.
    Such a great poem and quite deservedly on the list.

  2. Marie Elena

    Robert, this is a fantastic idea! Thanks so much for making it easier for us to find the winning poems and meet the writers.

    Larry, I particularly appreciate, “I think the most important thing is not to expect each poem to be a home run.” Congratulations on making the Top 25, and THANK YOU for this reminder.

    1. PressOn

      I’d like to echo Marie’s comments and add my congratulations. The “home run” allusion is gratifying, especially for those poems of mine that don’t get out of the infield. I am all too aware of how often that happens.

  3. seingraham

    Nicely done Larry. Easy to see why you placed in the top 25 with your “Powerless” poem; great play on word(s) for a title as well. Sounds like you lead an interesting life doing worthwhile work…kudos for all of it.

  4. Julieann

    After experiencing numerous hurricanes of various strengths you are so right on with your sentiments. You captured an event, a moment perfectly. Your words resonate within the soul. You so deserve to be picked as one of the 25. Way to go!!!!

  5. De Jackson

    Larry, your winning poem packs a powerful punch – and that’s not easy to do with a repeating form. Well done.

    Both my kids are in the GATE program, and I’m giddy with glee and gratitude that there is a gifted word slinger out there teaching our future.

    Happy to have learned more about you. CONGRATULATIONS on making the Top 25! 🙂



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