The Barefoot Muse Guidelines

As a writer of formal poetry I became frustrated by how few markets there are which specialize in this area. Rather than moping about this I decided to do something about it myself, and hence The Barefoot Muse was born.The first issue went online in June 2005. Submissions are welcomed all year round. Editorial Deadlines are May 15th for the June issue and November 15th for the December issue.


Poems in formal structures are most welcome. These include, but are not limited to: Sonnets, Villanelles, Triolets, Sestinas, Pantoums and Rondeaus.

Please send 3-6 poems in the body of an email to

Your email title should be SUB:Barefoot Muse

New! You may now also mail 3-6 poems to the following address: The Barefoot Muse, PO Box 115, Hainesport, NJ 08036. Please include an email address or SASE for reply.

Bear in mind that shorter poems of less than 40 lines work best for electronic media.

Previously published poems will be considered although unpublished work is preferred. Simultaneous submissions accepted with notification. I will not open attachments except by prior arrangement.

Biographical information and credits are not required at this stage. Poems will be evaluated on merit alone, and bios requested along with acceptance notices.

I will endeavor to respond to all submissions within 8 weeks. Please submit no more than one time in any six month period unless invited to do so.

Note well: the web is inundated with journals which publish free verse. There is nothing wrong with free verse; I write it myself. BUT do not send me free verse. The Barefoot Muse will only publish poems in received forms, or which use meter (rhyme is optional). If you do not know what meter is, find out before sending me anything which rhymes: a Metrical Primer.


I also publish essays on aspects of formal/metrical poetry, and reviews of books with a noticeable proportion of formal poetry. Please submit a query email to

If you have a book or chapbook you would like me to consider for review, please mail it to The Barefoot Muse, PO Box 115, Hainesport, NJ 08036, including an email address or SASE for reply. Note: review copies will not be returned. The Barefoot Muse review policy is to provide balanced, respectful reviews which shrink neither from praise nor criticism, as tools to inform a prospective buyer/reader.

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If your poetry is not suitable for The Barefoot Muse please consider submitting instead to:
Chantarelle's Notebook. If you are submitting mostly sonnets please consider Sonnetto Poesia or
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