We are happy to announce the winner of the inaugural David Blair Memorial Chapbook Prize! Judge Vievee Francis has selected Aviary Bestiary by Joseph O. Legaspi. Joseph will receive $150, 40 author copies, and a high quality video recording of a poem by founding editor Jamaal May.
Winner of the Blair Prize!
Joseph O. Legaspi is the author of Imago (CavanKerry Press) and Subways (Thrush Press), a chapbook. Recent works appeared in Poem-A-Day from the Academy of American Poets, jubilat, diode, South Dakota Review, Water~Stone Review, and the anthologies Language for a New Century (W.W. Norton), Collective Brightness (Sibling Rivalry Press), Flicker and Spark (Low Brow Press) and Coming Close (Prairie Lights/University of Iowa Press). He co-founded Kundiman (www.kundiman.org), a non-profit organization serving Asian American poetry.
We are also happy to be publishing the first runner up manuscript, Mammoth by Rachel McKibbens!
Special shout-out to our other 2nd runners up: Snake Mountain Almanac by Matthew Wimberley/Last Night I Dreamt of Volcanoes by Michelle Peñaloza (tied) and 3rd runner up Disasterology by Maggie Smith.
Thank you to all of the wonderful poets who trusted the OW! ARts mission enough to send work. We were assured by our contest judge, Vievee Francis, that the finalists did not make it easy on her. The editors can attest that it was among the strongest pool of manuscripts we’ve seen in our collective years of screening and editing. Check back here in the Late spring for the 2014 Blair Prize.
In Memory of
Blair, born David Alan Blair, passed away on July 23, 2011. He was an award-winning, multi-faceted artist: singer-songwriter, poet, writer, performer, musician, community activist and teacher. Born Sept. 19, 1967, he grew up in Newton, N.J., but called Detroit his adopted home. Blair performed all over the world and has friends on almost every continent. Blair’s work and life leave an indelible impression on the Detroit community as well as all of the communities he touched. The Blair prize honors his legacy.
Vievee Francis is the author of Horse in the Dark (Northwestern University Press, 2012) which won the Cave Canem Northwestern University Poetry Prize for a second collection, and Blue-Tail Fly (Wayne State University, 2006) which Poets & Writers Magazine listed among their notable debuts. Her work has appeared in numerous journals, textbooks and anthologies including Best American Poetry 2010 and Angles of Ascent, A Norton Anthology of African American Poetry. She was the 2009/2010 Poet in Residence for the Alice Lloyd Hall Scholars Program at the University of Michigan. She is the recipient of a 2009 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers Award as well as a 2010 Kresge Award. She is an Associate Editor for Callaloo. http://bookcritics.org/blog/archive/small-press-spotlight-vievee-francis