NORTHAMPTON, Mass., April 15, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Winning Writers is pleased to announce the results from its 18th annual Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest, judged by Soma Mei Sheng Frazier with assistance from Jim DuBois. Tony Keith Jr. of Washington, DC won the Tom Howard Prize of $3,000 for a poem in any style or genre, for “Black Man on Fire”. Kayleb Rae Candrilli of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania won the Margaret Reid Prize of $3,000 for a poem that rhymes or has a traditional style, for “Ghazals Connected As Though Cargo Freights”. The winners also received two-year gift certificates from the contest co-sponsor, Duotrope. 5,785 entries were received from around the world.
“Black Man on Fire” is a poem of intense but carefully controlled momentum, ignited by the opening confession-proclamation, “when I write/I’m dangerous”. Language is the vessel for all the anger, pain, pride, and satire that America doesn’t want to hear from a gay Black man. Frazier said, “The poet balances a breakneck pace and expert craft with introspection and a clear-eyed reverence for the calm catharsis of writing itself.”
“Ghazals Connected As Though Cargo Freights” is a transgender coming-of-age narrative that is also an elegy for post-industrial American towns, where a child can happily dumpster-dive for library books and a father’s name can become synonymous with wreckage. Frazier called it “a tightly loaded train swerving from the speaker’s childhood through perilous and tender adolescence to the self-actualization of adulthood.”
Ten Honorable Mentions of $200 went to Threa Almontaser, Judith Antelman, R.D. Bailey, Amber Edwards, Maria Greer, Kathryn Etters Lovatt, Hannah Louise Poston, Anne Delana Reeves, Anna Scotti, and Imane Terhmina. The top 12 poems and judge’s comments are published on the Winning Writers website.
The 2021 contest is now open through September 30, 2021. Soma Frazier returns to judge, now assisted by Vernon Keeve III. See the guidelines and enter here.
In addition to the Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest, Winning Writers sponsors the Tom Howard/John H. Reid Fiction & Essay Contest, the North Street Book Prize for Self-Published Books, and the Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest (no fee). All these contests are recommended by Reedsy. Learn more on the Winning Writers website.
SOURCE Winning Writers