Deadline Approaches for the Derek Walcott Prize for Poetry

The inaugural Derek Walcott Prize for Poetry is open for submissions. Sponsored by Arrowsmith Press, in partnership with the Derek Walcott Festival and the Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, the award will be given for a poetry collection written by a living poet who is not a U.S. citizen. Books published anywhere in the world during the previous calendar year, in English or translated into English, are eligible. The winner will receive a cash prize of $1,000, a reading at the Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, the publication of a limited-edition broadside by Arrowsmith Press, and a weeklong residency at one of Walcott’s homes in either St. Lucia or Port-of-Spain, Trinidad. If the winning work is a translated book, the prize money will be shared between the translator and the poet.

Publishers may submit books published between January 1, 2019 and December 31, 2019 with a $20 entry fee by February 15. Multiple submissions are permitted, but each book requires a separate submission and fee. Visit the website for complete guidelines.

The winner of the prize will be announced in May and will be invited to give a reading in Boston in October 2020. Glyn Maxwell, the editor of Walcott’s Selected Poems and a friend of the late poet, will judge. The prize was established by Walcott’s family to honor his lifelong support of emerging writers.

Photo: Derek Walcott