We’re pleased to announce the fifty final selections for Best New Poets 2011 as made by D.A. Powell.
Scott Abels, “As Rambo Lay Dying” (nominated by Juked)
Kaveh Bassiri, “See Also”
Ash Bowen, “How Gravity Hated Us”
Thea Brown, “Anxieties of the Living Dead”
Eric Burger, “The Friendly Neighbor”
Zach Buscher, “Nanopharmacology”
William Camponovo, “Elegy”
Brittany Cavallaro, “At the Illinois State Fair”
Charlie Clark, “Essay Against Symbolism”
Claudia Cortese, “She Wants to be All Horse”
J. K. Daniels, “Unmapped” (nominated by George Mason University)
James Davis, “Aa”
Jesse DeLong, “The Amateur Scientist's Notebook: Phosphorus”
Ansel Elkins, “Ghost at My Door”
Natalie Giarratano, “New Coyote”
David Gorin, “from Dust Jackets”
Rae Gouirand, “Ice Plant”
Kimberly Grey, “Conjugated”
Christian Harder, “A Difficulty of Flowers”
Rebecca Hazelton, “Book of Janus”
Hilary S. Jacqmin, “Wedding Album”
Janine Joseph, “Wreck”
Eric Kocher, “A Taxonomy of the Etiquette of Brandos”
Virginia Konchan, “Cafe Noir” (nominated by the University of Illinois at Chicago)
Kate Lebo, “Every Beginning Wants a Good Place to Start”
Julie Lein, “Fennel”
Nate Liederbach, “Untitled [There’s only one kind of kindness...]”
Jennifer Luebbers, “Recess”
Jodie Marion, “The Exile's Wife”
Ayako Matsushita, “Lingering Summer Heat”
Gerardo Mena, “So I Was a Coffin”
Sara Michas-Martin, “Cage” (nominated by The Believer)
Hemant Mohapatra, “All That Bravery Got Us Nowhere”
Jacob Newberry, “Outdoor Sermon on the Concrete Foundation of What Was the First Baptist Church of Gulfport, Mississippi”
Angelo Nikolopoulos, “Daffodil”
Sarah Rose Nordgren, “Don’t”
Pamela Johnson Parker, “Housewifery: An Annotation”
Nancy Reddy, “My Girlhood Apothecary”
Jonathan Rice, “Soon Ghost”
Matthew Ritger, “Thirty”
Dean C Robertson, “St. Catherine Yearning in North America”
Aubrey Ryan, “Sam and Lulu at the Very End of the World”
Nicole Sealey, “An Apology for Trashing Magazines in Which You Appear”
Emily T. Smith, “Sacagawea, That Strange Bird”
Jeff Tigchelaar, “Blurbs”
Stephen Neal Weiss, “Four Color Process”
David Welch, “17 Movements in Spring”
Josh Wild, “Self-Portrait after Paul Morphy's Stroke”
Cori A. Winrock, “Anterior of a Razed Room” (nominated by Black Warrior Review)
Chelsea Woodard, “Finding the Porn Magazines”
Number of submissions: 1363
Number of submissions sent to the guest editor: 185 (some with one poem, some with two)
Number of final selections: as always, 50
Number of male finalists: 24
Number of female finalists: 26
Number of finalists selected who were nominated by a journal or school: 5
Number of finalists selected from the Open Competition: 45
2011 Finalist Biographies
“As Rambo Lay Dying” (nominated by Juked)
Originally from Nebraska, SCOTT ABELS has an MFA from Boise State University. His recent work can be found in print and online with RealPoetik, Forklift Ohio, H_ngm_n, Juked, Lo-Ball, Sink Review, DIAGRAM, Sixth Finch, and others. He currently lives and teaches in Honolulu, where he edits the online poetry journal Country Music.
KAVEH BASSIRI is the co-founder of Triptych Readings and the literary arts director of the Persian Art Festival. His translation was the recipient of the 2010 Witter Bynner Translation Residency and the 2011 Walton Translation Fellowship. His poetry won the Bellingham Review's 49th Parallel Award and was recently published in Virginia Quarterly Review, Bellevue Literary Review, Drunken Boat, and Mississippi Review.
“How Gravity Hated Us”
ASH BOWEN's work has appeared in New England Review, Black Warrior Review, Rattle, Blackbird and elsewhere in print and online. He recently co-edited Two Weeks: A Digital Anthology of Contemporary Poetry. He is co-managing editor of Linebreak (www.linebreak)
“Anxieties of the Living Dead”
THEA BROWN grew up in Dutchess County, New York, and holds degrees from Cornell University, the University of Chicago and the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in H_NGM_N and Forklift, Ohio. She lives in Iowa City.
“The Friendly Neighbor”
ERIC BURGER holds an MFA from the University of Arizona and a PhD from the University of Utah. He has received fellowships/awards from the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing, the Arizona Commission on the Arts, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and Writers at Work. His poems have appeared in Denver Quarterly, Black Warrior Review, The Missouri Review Online, CutBank, Phoebe, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Gulf Coast, Sugar House Review, and Puerto del Sol, among others. He teaches at the University of Colorado and lives in Boulder with his wife Katherine and children Willem and June.
ZACH BUSCHER hails from the Wild West of Massachusetts. He recently received his MFA from the University of Arizona, where he was a Beverly Rogers Fellow and Poetry Editor for Sonora Review. He now teaches at Quinsigamond Community College in Worcester, Massachusetts. Previous poems have appeared online in 42opus, SHAMPOO, 580 Split, Otoliths, tinfoildresses, sawbuck, Wheelhouse Magazine, Spooky Boyfriend, Juked, My Name is Mud, Back Room Live, Spork, and La Petite Zine. He lives in Boston, Massachusetts and www.zachbuscher.com.
WILLIAM CAMPONOVO is from in-and-around the metropolitan areas of Philadelphia and Baltimore. He has studied creative writing at The Johns Hopkins University and the University of Washington, where he has taught at its Seattle and Rome campuses. His poems have appeared in Iron Horse Literary Review, The Seattle Review, and the Language Exchange at the Campbell Corner of Sarah Lawrence College. He lives in Seattle.
“At the Illinois State Fair”
BRITTANY CAVALLARO's poems have recently appeared or are forthcoming in Gettysburg Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, Indiana Review and elsewhere. She received her MFA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she was the editor-in-chief of Devil's Lake. She has been a finalist for the Ruth Lilly Fellowship and the recipient of awards such as the David and Jean Milofsky Prize in Creative Writing, scholarships from the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, and the Chancellor's Fellowship from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she is a PhD candidate.
“Essay Against Symbolism”
CHARLIE CLARK’s work has appeared in Blackbird; Forklift, Ohio; The Laurel Review; The Missouri Review; Smartish Pace; and other journals. He studied poetry at the University of Maryland and lives in Austin, Texas.
“She Wants to be All Horse”
A recipient of the Stan and Tom Wick Poetry Scholarship and a graduate of Sarah Lawrence College’s MFA program, CLAUDIA CORTESE was the poetry editor for Lumina Magazine. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in numerous journals, including Crazyhorse, Bellevue Literary Review, RATTLE, Calyx, and Pank. She lives and teaches in New Jersey.
“Unmapped” (nominated by George Mason University)
J.K. DANIELS lived in Florida, Louisiana, and Georgia before settling in Virginia to obtain an MA and MFA from George Mason University. She is the former editor of So to Speak: a Feminist Journal of Literature and Art, a reader for the Northern Virginia Review, and an assistant professor at Northern Virginia Community College.
JAMES DAVIS holds an MFA from the University of Florida. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in 32 Poems, Gargoyle, HTMLGIANT, and The New York Quarterly. He lives in Denver.
“The Amateur Scientist's Notebook: Phosphorus”
JESSE DELONG lives in Tuscloosa, Alabama, where he is working towards his MFA in Poetry from the University of Alabama. His work can be found or is forthcoming from The Offending Adam, Copper Nickel, Word Riot, Illya's Honey, 751 Magazine and elsewhere. His chapbook, Tearings, and Other Poems, was released by Curley Head Press.
“Ghost At My Door”
ANSEL ELKINS lives in Greensboro, North Carolina, and is a winner of the 2011 “Discovery”/Boston Review Poetry Prize. Poems have appeared or are forthcoming in The American Scholar, The Believer, Boston Review, Mississippi Review, Ninth Letter, The Southern Review, Third Coast, and elsewhere.
NATALIE GIARRATANO is a PhD candidate in poetry at Western Michigan University. Recent poems appear or are forthcoming in American Literary Review, Laurel Review, and Hayden’s Ferry Review. She was poetry editor for Third Coast for two years and an assistant editor at New Issues Poetry and Prose for three.
RAE GOUIRAND’s poems and essays have appeared in American Poetry Review, Boston Review, Columbia, The Kenyon Review: KROnline, Seneca Review, Bateau, Memoir (and), and Best New Poets 2009, and were recently selected for Verse Daily’s Best of 2010 list. Her first collection of poems, OPEN WINTER, was recently selected by Elaine Equi for the 2011 Bellday Poetry Prize and will be published in November 2011. The winner of the Meijer Fellowship, the Hopwood Award, fellowships from the Vermont Studio Center and the Santa Fe Art Institute, and a 2009 award from the Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Foundation for outstanding work by emerging poets, she lives in Davis, California and serves as Writer-in-Residence for the Cache Creek Conservancy.
“from Dust Jackets”
DAVID GORIN is a recent graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop and a PhD student in English Literature at Yale University. His writing has appeared in A Public Space, The Believer, The Boston Review, The Claudius App, and Jacket.
KIMBERLY GREY is a poet and photographer living in New York City. Her poems have appeared in Washington Square Review, TriQuarterly, The Awl, The Brooklyn Review, The Portland Review, Barrelhouse, DIAGRAM, and elsewhere. Her website is www.kimberlyMgrey.com
“A Difficulty of Flowers”
CHRISTIAN HARDER is senior studying Literature at Virginia Tech University. He hopes to attend an MFA program upon his graduation. Otherwise, he regularly interviews writers on his blog Pages to Pixels.
“Book of Janus”
REBECCA HAZELTON has an MFA from Notre Dame and a PhD from Florida State. She has been the recipient of fellowships from the Creative Writing Institute at University of Wisconsin-Madison and from Vermont Studio Center. Her work has been published in The Gettysburg Review, The Southern Review, Pleiades, and other journals.
HILARY S. JACQMIN earned her BA in English from Wesleyan University and her MA in Writing Seminars from The Johns Hopkins University. She is currently a third-year MFA student in poetry at the University of Florida. Her poetry has appeared in AGNI Online, Measure, The Urbanite, The Sewanee Theological Review, and Iron Horse Literary Review. Her poem "World’s Fair" won Third Prize in The Atlantic's Student Writing Contest. Her poem “Ode to Our Magister” was selected as the Honorable Mention in Southwest Review’s 2010 Morton Marr Poetry Prize contest. Her poem “The Good Girl” was selected as one of the winners of the 2010 AWP Intro Journals contest; it was published in Controlled Burn.
“Housewifery: An Annotation”
PAMELA JOHNSON PARKER is a medical editor and teaches creative writing and humanities part time at Murray State University in western Kentucky. Her chapbooks are A Walk Through the Memory Palace, which won the Qarrtsiluni prize, and Other Four-Letter Words.
JANINE JOSEPH’s poems have appeared in Hayden's Ferry Review, Third Coast, Spoon River Poetry Review, and Nimrod, among others. A Kundiman fellow, she holds degrees from UC Riverside and the Creative Writing Program at New York University. She currently teaches with Writers In the Schools and is a PhD student in literature and creative writing at the University of Houston where she is a poetry editor for Gulf Coast.
“A Taxonomy of the Etiquette of Brandos”
ERIC KOCHER received his MFA from the University of Houston and currently holds the writer-in-residence position at Hub-Bub in Spartanburg, South Carolina. Some of his work has appeared or is forthcoming in Boston Review, DIAGRAM, H_NGM_N, Octopus, The Offending Adam, and elsewhere.
“Café Noir” (nominated by the University of Illinois at Chicago)
VIRGINIA KONCHAN’s poems have appeared in Hayden's Ferry Review, the Believer, The New Republic, Notre Dame Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, Jacket, Poet Lore, and elsewhere. Her critical prose has appeared in Boston Review and Rain Taxi, among other places. She is currently a doctoral candidate in the Program for Writers at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
“Every Beginning Wants a Good Place to Start”
KATE LEBO is a poet and pie maker from Seattle, where she attends the University of Washington’s MFA program. Her poems have appeared most recently in Poetry Northwest, Bateau, and The Portland Review, and she’s the recipient of a Nelson Bentley Fellowship, a 4Culture grant, and a Soapstone residency. For more about Kate’s zine, A Commonplace Book of Pie, and other tasty treats, visit Good Egg: goodeggseattle.blogspot.com.
JULIE LEIN is completing her PhD in Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Utah, where she also serves as Editorial Assistant for the online poetry archive Eclipse. A former poetry co-Editor of Quarterly West, she has received the Larry Levis Associated Writers and Writing Programs Poetry Prize and the University of Cincinnati’s Playwriting Prize. Work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Antioch Review, Barrow Street, Bateau, Colorado Review, The Laurel Review, Many Mountains Moving, Phoebe, and elsewhere. She lives in the Salt Lake City area with her husband, infant daughter, and small dog.
“Untitled [There’s only one kind of kindness...]”
NATE LIEDERBACH is a PhD candidate in Creative Writing and English Literature at the University of Utah. Author of the prose collection Doing a Bit of Bleeding and co-editor of the anthology Of a Monstrous Child: Creative Writing Mentorships, Nate's work has appeared or is forthcoming in Mississippi Review, Permafrost, Quarterly West, Georgetown Review, Oregon Quarterly, Versal, South Dakota Review, and more. Recently, Nate has assumed the role of Managing Editor for the Western Humanities Review.
JENNIFER LUEBBERS is currently pursuing her MFA in poetry at Indiana University, where she serves as Associate Editor of Indiana Review. Her work has appeared in Boxcar Poetry Review, Brevity, Iron Horse Literary Review, Naugatuck River Review, and San Pedro River Review, among others.
“The Exile's Wife”
JODIE MARION is from the Indian River region in Florida but has lived in the Northwest for the last 12 years where she mothers four wild children and teaches. Her manuscript eye teeth was a finalist in the 2011 BOOM/Bateau chapbook contest, and poems from it appear in The New Guard Literary Review, Floating Bridge Review, and VoiceCatcher. She received the 2011 Paula Jones Gardiner Award from Floating Bridge Press and is at work on a manuscript called Another Exile.
“Lingering Summer Heat”
AYAKO MATSUSHITA grew up in Hachioji city in Tokyo, and currently lives in Roanoke, Virginia, as a student of Hollins University's MFA program. She writes poetry and enjoys reading contemporary American and Japanese literature. Her tanka poems have appeared in newspapers and have been published in the book Heisei Manyo-shu.
“So I Was a Coffin”
GERARDO MENA is a decorated Iraqi Freedom veteran. He spent six years in Special Operations with the Reconnaissance Marines and was awarded a Navy Achievement Medal with a V for Valor for multiple acts of bravery. He won the 2010 War Poetry contest sponsored by Winning Writers. He has pieces published or forthcoming in DIAGRAM, Nashville Review, New Mexico Poetry Review, Chautaqua, Barely South Review, and Spillway Magazine.
“Cage” (nominated by The Believer)
SARA MICHAS-MARTIN’s poems have recently appeared in The Believer, Harvard Review, Indiana Review, Denver Quarterly, Word/for Word and elsewhere. She is a former Stegner fellow and Jones lecturer at Stanford. She currently lives in Denver and teaches for Stanford’s Online Writers’ Studio and Goddard College. For more information please visit www.saramichas-martin.com.
“All That Bravery Got Us Nowhere”
HEMANT MOHAPATRA’s work has appeared in Eclectica, BrinkLit, Asia Writes and various other international literary magazines. He is the recipient of the 2011 Allen Ginsberg Poetry Prize (Honorable Mention), the Srinivas Rayaprol Poetry Prize and the Harper Collins Poetry Prize. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, traveling, photography, and playing the piano.
“Outdoor Sermon on the Concrete Foundation of What Was the First Baptist Church of Gulfport, Mississippi”
JACOB NEWBERRY is pursuing a PhD in Creative Writing at Florida State University, where he held the University Fellowship. He was also recently awarded a Fulbright Fellowship in Creative Writing to Israel. His poetry and nonfiction have been published or are forthcoming in Granta, The Iowa Review, The Crab Orchard Review, River Styx, and Rattle, among others. He is the former poetry editor of The Southeast Review.
ANGELO NIKOLOPOULOS is the recipient of the 2011 “Discovery”/Boston Review Poetry Prize and a graduate of NYU's Creative Writing Program. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in the Awl, Boston Review, Boxcar Poetry Review, Los Angeles Review, Meridian, New York Quarterly, and elsewhere. He hosts The White Swallow Reading Series in New York City.
SARAH ROSE NORDGREN's poems have appeared in Iowa Review, Pleiades, Quarterly West, Cincinnati Review, Hayden’s Ferry, Verse Daily, and elsewhere. She is the recipient of two poetry fellowships from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, where she is currently in residence for the 2011-12 season, as well as both a Work-Study Scholarship and the Louis Untermeyer Scholarship from the Bread Loaf Writers Conference. She is married to poet Michael C. Peterson.
“My Girlhood Apothecary”
NANCY REDDY’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in Anti-, Cream City Review, Memorious, Cimarron Review, Crab Orchard Review, and elsewhere. She holds an MFA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she is currently a doctoral student in composition and rhetoric. She is also the reviews and interviews editor of Devil’s Lake.
JONATHAN RICE’s poems have been published in AGNI Online, Colorado Review, Mississippi Review, Sycamore Review, and Witness, among others, and were included or are forthcoming in The Southern Poetry Anthology, Volume V: Georgia, A Face to Meet the Faces: An Anthology of Contemporary Persona Poetry, Best of the Web 2009, and Best New Poets 2008. His poetry was also selected for the 2010 Indiana Review Poetry Prize, the 2010 Richard Peterson Poetry Prize from Crab Orchard Review, the 2008 Gulf Coast Poetry Prize, the 2008 Milton-Kessler Memorial Prize from Harpur Palate, the 2008 Yellowwood Poetry Prize from Yalobusha Review, and the 2006 AWP Intro to Journals Awards. He received an MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University, and is currently a PhD candidate at Western Michigan University.
MATTHEW RITGER was born and raised on the coast of Maine. He studied English at Dartmouth College and recently enrolled in the MFA program at Cornell University.
“St. Catherine Yearning in North America”
DEAN C ROBERTSON was born in Seattle, Washington and raised in Phoenix, Arizona. He is currently a contributing editor for the California Journal of Poetics and Poetry International. He currently lives and writes in San Diego, California.
“Sam and Lulu at the Very End of the World”
AUBREY RYAN's work has appeared recently or is forthcoming in DIAGRAM, Pebble Lake Review, The Dirty Napkin, Phoebe, and Booth Journal. She received her MFA from Northern Michigan University where she served as an Associate Poetry Editor of Passages North. She is currently living in Iowa with her husband and their new son, Arlo.
“An Apology for Trashing Magazines in Which You Appear”
NICOLE SEALEY is an Afro-Latina poet who was born in St. Thomas, U.S.V.I., and raised in Central Florida. Nicole is a Cave Canem graduate fellow, Hedgebrook and Squaw Valley alumna as well as the 2011 Agha Shahid Ali Scholar in Poetry at the Fine Arts Works Center in Provincetown. A finalist for the 2011 Third Coast Poetry Prize, her poems have appeared in the Harvard Review, Third Coast, and Callaloo, among others.
“Sacagawea, That Strange Bird”
EMILY T. SMITH is from South Carolina where she also earned a BS from Wofford College. She is the author of a chapbook (baboon heart, 2006) and is currently a student in the MFA program at Florida State University.
JEFF TIGCHELAAR is a stay-at-home dad in Kansas. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Redactions, Tar River Poetry, Verse Daily, Hunger Mountain, Harpur Palate, Natural Bridge, and Margie. His work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and has received a Langston Hughes Creative Writing Award and a fellowship from the Ohio Arts Council.
“Four Color Process”
STEPHEN NEAL WEISS is an MFA candidate at New York University, where he has taught creative writing. A former editor of the Yale Literary Magazine, his poems have appeared on NewYorker.com and in 42Opus. His prose has appeared in BlackBook, Gourmet, NYMag.com, Out and Salon.com. He is the co-author, with his wife Casey Kait, of Digital Hustlers: Living Large and Falling Hard in Silicon Alley (HarperCollins, 2001). They live with their children in South Orange, New Jersey.
“17 Movements in Spring”
DAVID WELCH has published poems in journals including AGNI, Indiana Review, and Subtropics. His poem "Tribute" appeared in Best New Poets 2007. He currently lives in Chicago, Illinois.
“Self-Portrait after Paul Morphy's Stroke”
JOSH WILD is a graduate of the MFA program at Purdue University. His poem in this anthology, "Self-Portrait after Paul Morphy's Stroke," originally appeared in Poetry. He lives in South Korea.
“Anterior of a Razed Room” (nominated by Black Warrior Review)
CORI A. WINROCK’s poems have appeared in (or are waiting in the wings of) Colorado Review, Blackbird, Black Warrior Review, Denver Quarterly, From the Fishouse & others. She is a recipient of a Barbara Deming Individual Artist Grant and was chosen as Editor’s Choice for Mid-American Review’s James Wright Poetry Award. She was an Emerging Writer Fellow at Kingston University in London, UK and runner-up for the 2011 Bucknell Stadler Fellowship. Her manuscript has been a finalist for a number of prizes including the Academy of American Poets’ Walt Whitman Award and the Kore Press First Book Award. She received her MFA from Cornell University and starting this fall will be a Visiting Assistant Professor at Geneseo.
“Finding the Porn Magazines”
CHELSEA WOODARD received her MFA from the Johns Hopkins University and is currently a doctoral fellow at the University of North Texas, where she has worked as the assistant poetry editor for the American Literary Review. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in the Southwest Review, Shenandoah, 32 Poems and other journals.