The University of Iowa Press  announced today the winners of the 2009 Iowa Poetry Prize , both of them receiving the honor for debut collections. The prize, which is given annually to both emerging and established writers, went to Samuel Amadon  for Like a Sea and Molly Brodak for A Little Middle of the Night. Their books will be published by the press next March, and each writer will receive a standard royalty contract.
Amadon is the author of the chapbooks Advice for Young Couples from H_NGM_N B_ _KS , Goodnight Lung from Octopus Books , Each H from Ugly Duckling Presse , and Spy Poem, released by Projective Industries , the chapbook press where he serves as coeditor. He received his MFA in poetry from Columbia University and is a PhD candidate in creative writing and literature at the University of Houston, where he teaches as a graduate fellow. "Rather than create worlds," University of Iowa Press said of Amadon's poems in the awards announcement, "they point out what a strange world already exists."
Brodak, whose Instructions for a Painting was selected by Reginald Shepherd  for the 2007 GreenTower Press  Midwest Chapbook Series, received her MFA in creative writing from West Virginia University and teaches at Augusta State University. The press noted that her collection "simmers with wit as Brodak confronts tragedy, childhood losses, transcendent love, and the question of art itself."
The next deadline for the prize is April 30, 2010.