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2015 Prizes for Contributors to POETRY Magazine Announced

Prizes awarded to poets, critics, and essayists featured in the magazine over the past year

Poetry magazine awards eight annual prizes for the best work published in Poetry during the past 12 months. Nine poets: Rae Armantrout, Terrance Hayes, Tarfia Faizullah, Jillian Weise, Ming Di, Jennifer Stern, Amy Newman, Jenny Zhang, and Maya Catherine Popa will receive the 2015 prizes for their poems, translations and prose that appeared in Poetry.

“Every year, Poetry recognizes the work of its contributors with a series of awards, some dating back to our earliest history and some of recent vintage,” says Poetry magazine editor Don Share. “Garlanding poets, critics and translators, the list of prizewinners has grown strikingly more impressive and more diverse over time, like contemporary poetry itself.”

THE LEVINSON PRIZE, presented annually since 1914 through the generosity of the late Salmon O. Levinson and his family, in the amount of $500, is awarded to Rae Armantrout for her poems “The Difficulty,” “The Ether,” “Followers,” and “Taking Place” from the January 2015 issue. The oldest of the magazine’s prizes still awarded today, the Levinson Prize has been awarded to such great poets as Wallace Stevens (1920), Edna St. Vincent Millay (1931), H.D. (1938), E.E. Cummings (1939), Dylan Thomas (1945), Muriel Rukeyser (1947), John Berryman (1950), William Carlos Williams (1954), Anne Sexton (1962), John Ashbery (1977), Yusef Komunyakaa (1997) and Rita Dove (1998).

THE BESS HOKIN PRIZE, established in 1948 through the generosity of Poetry’s late friend and guarantor Mrs. David Hokin, in the amount of $1,000, is awarded to Terrance Hayes for “How to Draw a Perfect Circle,” published in the December 2014 issue. Past winners of the Bess Hokin Prize include Ruth Stone (1953), Sylvia Plath (1957), W.S. Merwin (1962), Adrienne Rich (1963), Margaret Atwood (1974) and Paul Muldoon (1996).

THE FREDERICK BOCK PRIZE, founded in 1981 by friends in memory of the former associate editor of Poetry, in the amount of $500, is awarded to Tarfia Faizullah for “100 Bells” in the January 2015 issue. Past winners of the Frederick Bock Prize include Billy Collins (1992), Jane Kenyon (1993) and A.E. Stallings (2004).

THE J. HOWARD AND BARBARA M.J. WOOD PRIZE, endowed since 1994, in the amount of $5,000, is awarded to Jillian Weise for her poems “Future Biometrics” and “Biohack Manifesto" in the March 2015 issue. Past winners of the J. Howard and Barbara M.J. Wood Prize include Charles Wright (1996) and Franz Wright (2011).

THE JOHN FREDERICK NIMS MEMORIAL PRIZE FOR TRANSLATION, established in 1999 by Bonnie Larkin Nims, trustees of the Poetry Foundation, and friends of the late poet, translator and editor, in the amount of $500, is awarded to Ming Di and Jennifer Stern for their translations of Liu Xia’s poems “Empty Chairs” and “Transformed Creatures” in the November 2014 issue.

THE FRIENDS OF LITERATURE PRIZE, established in 2002 by the Friends of Literature, in the amount of $500, is awarded to Amy Newman for her poem “Howl” in the July/August 2015 issue.

THE EDITORS PRIZE FOR FEATURE ARTICLE, established in 2005, in the amount of $1,000, is awarded to Jenny Zhang for her essay “How It Feels” in the July/August 2015 issue.

THE EDITORS PRIZE FOR REVIEWING, established in 2004, in the amount of $1,000, is awarded to Maya Catherine Popa for “Forever Writing from Ireland,” her review of "The Architect’s Dream of Winter" by Billy Ramsell, "This Is Yarrow" by Tara Bergin, "Scapegoat" by Alan Gillis, and "Clasp" by Doireann Ní Ghríofa in the September 2015 issue.

The prizes are organized and administered by the Poetry Foundation in Chicago, publisher of Poetry magazine. Browse all past issues of Poetry magazine since 1912.

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About the Poetry Foundation
The Poetry Foundation, publisher of Poetry magazine, is an independent literary organization committed to a vigorous presence for poetry in our culture. It exists to discover and celebrate the best poetry and to place it before the largest possible audience. The Poetry Foundation seeks to be a leader in shaping a receptive climate for poetry by developing new audiences, creating new avenues for delivery and encouraging new kinds of poetry through innovative literary prizes and programs. For more information, please visit

About Poetry magazine
Founded in Chicago by Harriet Monroe in 1912, Poetry is the oldest monthly devoted to verse in the English-speaking world. Monroe’s “Open Door” policy, set forth in Volume 1 of the magazine, remains the most succinct statement of Poetry’s mission: to print the best poetry written today, in whatever style, genre or approach. The magazine established its reputation early by publishing the first important poems of T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, Marianne Moore, Wallace Stevens, H.D., William Carlos Williams, Carl Sandburg and other now-classic authors. In succeeding decades it has presented—often for the first time—works by virtually every major contemporary poet.