Well, here’s a nice bit of news to get while traveling! I just got word that I’ve won the Poetry Society of America’s 2015 Robert H. Winner award. Congratulations, too, to finalists J.C. Todd and Jonathan Weinert. The award “acknowledges original work being done in mid-career by a poet who has not had substantial recognition, and is open to poets over forty who have published no more than one book.” So: look! Recognition, AND a reminder that I’m over 40! Poetry giveth, and poetry taketh away…
Here’s the link to the announcement.
And here’s the fabulous write up by judge Alan Shapiro:
“These poems are distinguished by their sonic and semantic flexibility and range. They take on important subjects—racism, domestic, political and natural disasters, mortality and time, the contingencies of love, the vulnerabilities of flesh (“the soft parts of us…the first thing we give away,”)—in language that feels both improvised and exquisitely controlled, highly cadenced even when it looks like prose. Their tone is nothing if not companionable, good humored, fiercely clear sighted, full of passion and heart wrenching wisdom. From poem to poem, and even sometimes within the same poem, they shift from mode to mode, descriptively precise and essayistic, realistic and surreal, conversational and song-like. Simplicity of means, complexity of effect–that’s how I’d characterize the marvelous achievement these poems embody in every line of every piece.”
If you’ve read this far, it’s because you’re curious where I went on vacation. California: the coast (harbor seals, whales) and the desert – Joshua Tree National Park and Death Valley (no seals or whales). We’re warmed all the way through.