The 42 Miles Press Poetry Award

Announcing the Winner and Runners-Up of the 2013 42 Miles Press Poetry Award

Betsy Andrews, of Brooklyn, New York, has won the 42 Miles Press Poetry Award for her manuscript, The Bottom. The award includes a $1,000 prize and publication by 42 Miles Press, as well as a future reading at Indiana University South Bend upon publication. She was the winner of the 2007 Brittingham Prize in Poetry and is the author of New Jersey, She-Devil, and In Trouble. Her poems, essays, and reviews have appeared widely, in publications ranging from PRACTICE to the Yemeni newspaper Culture.

An excerpt from The Bottom:

Atop the bottom, the water-ghost
the riddle-ghost tower, fireballs lapping the ghost map
the ghost nets, the ghost moon, the ghost lines, the ghost traps,
the fingerlings giving up ghost
the long dark drive, the ghost drive, over the derelict moat
the ghost era’s ghost-dish, its secrets, its swallows,
its test site’s thousand ghost bites named for rivers
and ice caps and nautical terms, for fish and for towns named for ghost
the long-gone ghost of the beaver meadow, Las Vegas they called it, skinned
ghost wagers streaming in
the once-and-again wealth of the nation a tour-tram parking lot coast
ghost of the barnacled schoolroom, lesson a nibbling ghost
In the hook-and-sink daybreak
at the ghost-black terminal, its scaffolds and catwalks and ladders and berths,
gunships its ghost-and-ghost host,
a borne-again freighter named Universal Hope is suckling, is guzzling up the
in the cold commons’ ghost mouth, a trio of pearls,
three itches enraptured by ghost
the narwhal the sea cow the sea mink the monk seal a mouthful of ghost word,
the half-seas’ coral a ghost story written in bone-white ink
The king counts his ghostlands,
his wrecks and his flotsam, his jetsam, his water-strays, his fishes.
My wish is: We are on the shore, we are looking out at the water.
You are lying beside me, curled.
The sun is coming up. I am turning you over
I am going to see your face
The sun is coming up, I am turning you over
I am going to be able to see your face

*courtesy of poets for living waters

About New Jersey:

“Serving the swerve from witness to outrage, the poem follows war’s disastrous trajectory from domestic to international policy and singular to universal tragedy with unrelenting honesty. Andrews has a queer eye for empire, and this work is an incisive, exciting, and necessary intervention.” —Brian Teare, author of The Room Where I Was Born

The runners-up for the 2013 42 Miles Press Poetry Award are:
Megan Pugh, Whipsaw, first runner-up
Athena Nilssen, Mithraeum, second runner-up
Mark Wisnieski, These Were My Lovers, third runner-up
Paula Bonnell, Amanrath, fourth runner-up

2013 42 Miles Press Poetry Award Finalists and Semi-Finalists


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