News / Awards & Prizes

Announcing the 2017 Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry Finalists!

Milkweed Staff — 03/30/2017

We are pleased to announce the finalists of the 2017 Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry!

Presented in partnership by Milkweed Editions and the Lindquist & Vennum Foundation, the Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry seeks to support outstanding poets residing in Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin, North Dakota, and South Dakota and bring their work to a national stage. This year, we received more than 200 submissions.

The finalists are:

The Account of Worms by Angela Voras-Hills
Angela Voras-Hills earned her MFA at UMass-Boston and has received awards from The Sustainable Arts Foundation, Key West Literary Seminar, and The Writers’ Room of Boston. Her work has appeared in Kenyon Review Online, Hayden’s Ferry Review, New Ohio Review, and Best New Poets, among other journals and anthologies. She is co-founder of Arts + Literature Laboratory in Madison, WI, and lives with her family in Milwaukee.

Gatekeeper by Patrick Johnson
Patrick Johnson
works at UW Hospital while preparing to become a physician assistant. A graduate of Washington University’s MFA program and UW-Madison’s English Department, he has published poems from his manuscript Gatekeeper about the internet, anonymity, love, and philosophy. In his spare time he enjoys lifting weights, progressive politics, and cooking.

Homeboys with Slipped Halos by Michael Torres
Michael Torres
is a Mexican-American writer, born and brought up in Pomona, California where he spent his adolescence as a graffiti artist. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Green Mountains Review, Huizache, Forklift, Ohio and Tinderbox Poetry Journal among others. He has received grants from the Minnesota State Arts Board and the Jerome Foundation. Torres is a VONA alum, a 2016-17 winner of the Loft Mentor Series, and was the 2017 CantoMundo Distinguished Fellow for the Palm Beach Poetry Festival. Currently, he resides in Mankato, Minnesota where he teaches creative writing and co-hosts “Notepad Poets,” an art workshop for at-risk and homeless youth at the Reach drop-in center through Good Thunder Reading Series Community Outreach.

Solve for Desire by Caitlin Bailey
Caitlin Bailey holds an M.F.A. from Hamline University. Her poems have appeared in or are forthcoming from Prairie Schooner, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Sugar House Review, Carolina Quarterly, and elsewhere.

To Afar from Afar by Soham Patel
Soham Patel
 is the author or three chapbooks: and nevermind the storm and New Weather Drafts (Portable Press at Yo-Yo Labs) and Riva: A Chapter (kitchen-shy press). Her work has been included in Copper Nickel, Denver Quarterly, eleven eleven journal, and elsewhere. She is a staff member for the Kundiman Asian-American Writers Retreat at Fordham University and is currently a Distinguished Dissertation Fellow in the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee’s PhD Program in Creative Writing where she also serves as a poetry editor for cream city review.

Wait by Paige Riehl
Paige Riehl
is the author of Blood Ties, a poetry chapbook published by Finishing Line Press (2014). Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in many publications such as Crab Orchard Review, Portland Review, Meridian, South Dakota Review, and Nimrod International Journal. She won the 2012-2013 Loft Mentor Series in Poetry and the 2011 Literal Latte Prize for Poetry and was a 2016 Pushcart Prize nominee. In 2016, Billy Collins selected her to participate in his small Key West Literary Seminar poetry workshop. She is the Poetry Editor for Midway Journal and an English faculty member at Anoka-Ramsey Community College.

“Judging from the dozen or so manuscripts that reached me in the final stages of this contest, poetry is alive and very well in our region. It was humbling and gratifying to read these manuscripts, and difficult to select a half-dozen finalists that would go on to Srikanth Reddy for his consideration. The finalists make up a remarkably various group of poets, in every way.”
—Daniel Slager, Publisher, Milkweed Editions

All six finalists will be featured at Milkweed’s second annual National Poetry Month Party, which is a two-part event on Thursday, April 13. At 5:30 p.m., poets and poetry fans will mix and mingle in the Milkweed Editions office suite with poetry-themed drinks and hors d’oeuvres. At 7:00 p.m., the party continues with a reading in the Target Performance Hall featuring the Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry finalists. Learn more and RSVP here»

The winner of this year’s prize, chosen by independent judge Srikanth Reddy, will be announced on Wednesday, April 19. The prize awards $10,000 and a contract for publication.

Congratulations to these immensely talented poets!