Gunpowder Press is thrilled to announce that Michelle Bonczek Evory is the winner of the fourth annual Barry Spacks Poetry Prize for her book, The Ghosts of Lost Animals. Final judge Lee Herrick says of this book:
Michelle Bonczek Evory’s The Ghosts of Lost Animals is full of risk, reward, gravity, invention, and surprise. There is a hunger and desire resonating through the poems that evoke the carpe diem theme with a gorgeous lyric velocity, curiosity, and wisdom. These poems explore the natural world, love and lovers, divorce and marriage, and I kept coming back to them again and again. This is a brave new voice and a marvelous book.
The Ghosts of Lost Animals is forthcoming from Gunpowder Press. Michelle Bonczek Evory is the author of The Art of the Nipple (Orange Money Publishing), Before Fort Clatsop (Finishing Line Press), A Roadside Attempt at Attraction (Celery City), as well as Naming the Unnamable: An Approach to Poetry for New Generations (Open SUNY Textbooks). Her poetry has been featured in the Best New Poets Anthology and in many journals and magazines, including Crazyhorse, cream city review, Green Mountains Review, Orion Magazine, The Progressive, Wasafiri: The Magazine of International Contemporary Writing, and Water~Stone Review. In 2015, she and her husband poet Rob Evory were the inaugural Artists in Residence at Gettysburg National Military Park. She currently teaches English and humanities in Kalamazoo, MI, and mentors poets at The Poet’s Billow (thepoetsbillow.org).
There were 128 submissions for this year’s prize. Of these, 10 finalists were selected, including the winning manuscript. The other finalists were:
The Ghosts of Lost Animals joins Aaron Baker’s Posthumous Noon (2017), Kurt Olsson’s Burning Down Disneyland (2016), and Catherine Abbey Hodges’ Instead of Sadness (2015). We congratulate our winner and the finalists, as well as those poets whose extraordinary manuscripts found a publisher elsewhere during the consideration process.
Gunpowder Press was impressed by the very high quality of all the submissions. It inspires us. Thank you to all the poets who allowed us to consider their work and who have helped support the press.