Katie Hartsock has won the 2015 Page Davidson Clayton Prize for Emerging Poets, which is awarded annually to the best poet appearing in MQR who has not yet published a book. The award, which is determined by the MQR editors, is in the amount of $500.
MQR Poetry Editor Keith Taylor writes about her poem “The Sister Karamazov,” which appeared in our Spring 2015 issue, “We were very impressed by this poet’s ability to enter one of the classics and to reimagine it, adding another emotional and metaphoric level to something that a lesser imagination might see as fixed and impenetrable.”
Raymond McDaniel has won the 2015 Laurence Goldstein Poetry Prize, which is awarded annually to the author of the best poem or group of poems appearing that year in Michigan Quarterly Review. His poem “Claire Lenoir,” appeared in the Fall 2015 issue. This year’s judge, Paisley Rekdal, writes:
The poem marvelously captures, in tone and form, the very essence of the uncanny: one of the poem’s central subjects. The poem renders the process through which we gain knowledge of ourselves and others both mysterious and terrifying at once, recalling for me Howard Baker’s plaintive question during the Watergate trials: What did you know, and when did you know it?
Having consoled myself in damp pubs in London, creaked across frozen lakes in the deep freeze of Minnesota, and coughed my way through Philadelphian afternoons that could never decide between rain or sleet, I can tell you: there are many different kinds of cold. It’s something Wallace Stevens knew well. His poem, “The Snow Man,” is probably the most famous winter poem in modern poetry, laying before us a “distant glitter” and, within it, the full presence of winter’s unique nothingness.
“The process of making a poetry comic is vital, since I don’t plan out in advance; don’t plot and storyboard. The process is where the piece determines itself. It’s a lot like composing a poem on a blank page: you have tools (language, memories, obsessions, sound) and you work with those in a sort of simultaneous process of improvisation and intent. So, even if the poem is already written, it’s going to become something totally different in the end.”
“In the body’s own words, it cannot live like a vegetable in the country.” I am twenty-one and sitting on a bunk in a shotgun house in Mid-City, New Orleans, reading C.D. Wright. After a few conversations on the phone with a professor at the University of New Orleans, I have come here, weeks after graduating college, to help with an oral history project about the experiences of people who lived through Katrina.