Alicat's sooooo right.
I was skeptical, for instance, of poetry.com's contest from the beginning anyway, in that they placed a limit on the amount of lines your poem submissions could be, etc.
If it were a haiku contest, I would absolutely understand. But poetry should be widely accepted upon its full nature, and to restrict it to a certain amount of lines shyed me away, for often I just have so much to say, my imagination is always running wild and you just can't wrap a barbed wire around a thought.
In the true sense of the word, on multiple levels, there's nothing free about these sorts of contests. It isn't free in a commerical sense, it isn't free in an appreciative sense, and it also isn't free in an artistic sense.
Hang in there, dearest friend. There are those out there who truly will respect your voice and give it a dignified place.
"If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other"