Winners and Finalists of the 2020 Palette Poetry Prize!


We are honored to share with everyone the winners, finalists, and longlist of the 2020 Palette Poetry Prize, selected by the 2019 Pulitzer winner, Forrest Gander!

Winners of the 2020 Sappho

1st & $4000— Teresa Dzieglewicz, for “There are no police in this poem” (to be published on December 17, 2020)

Formally propulsive, its virgules slicing up the silence that a line break would create, the poem rushes forward even while the repeating, insisting phrase “there are no
police…” creates a back eddy of intensity in our minds.  — Forrest Gander

Teresa Dzieglewicz is an educator, Pushcart Prize-winning poet, and a co-director of the Mní Wičhóni Nakíčižiŋ Owáyawa (Defenders of the Water School) at Standing Rock Reservation. She received her MFA from Southern Illinois University, where she received the Academy of American Poets Prize. She is the winner of the 2018 Auburn Witness Poetry Prize and she has received fellowships from Brooklyn Poets, New Harmony Writer’s Workshop, the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center, and the NY Mills Arts Retreat. Her poems appear or are forthcoming in the Pushcart Prize XLII, Best New Poets, Beloit Poetry Journal, Prairie Schooner, Ninth Letter, Sixth Finch, and elsewhere.


2nd & $300— Matthew Minicucci, for  “(grapes)” (to be published on December 16, 2020)

While the rich and particular lexicon calls into presence the sensual world, the medial caesura, “the point of rupture,” acts out death’s space, the awful gap between those who have gone and “all you have left.”  — Forrest Gander

Matthew Minicucci’s most recent collection, Small Gods (New Issues), won the 2019 Stafford/Hall Oregon Book Award in Poetry. His poetry and essays have appeared in or are forthcoming from numerous journals including APR, The Believer, POETRY, The Southern Review, and the Virginia Quarterly Review. He is the recipient of numerous fellowships and awards including the Stanley P. Young Fellowship in Poetry from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, a Writer-in-Residence fellowship from the James Merrill House, and the 43rd Dartmouth Poet-in-Residence from Dartmouth College and the Frost House.


3rd & $200— Kathleen Winter, for “The Sheep and The Lambs” (to be published on December 15th, 2020)

Throughout the extended references to sheep and lambs, place fills in with emotion, and what begins as a pastoral, in lines that stretch across the page like the Irish landscape, transforms into a complex meditation on loss.  — Forrest Gander

Kathleen Winter is the author of three poetry collections, Transformer (2020), the judge’s selection for the Hilary Tham Collection at The Words Works, I will not kick my friends (2018), which won the Elixir Poetry Prize, and Nostalgia for the Criminal Past, winner of the Texas Institute of Letters first book award. Her poems have appeared in The New Republic, Tin House, The New Statesman, Agni, Cincinnati Review, Poetry London and Yale Review. She was granted fellowships by Sewanee Writers’ Conference, Dora Maar House, James Merrill House, Cill Rialaig Project, and Vermont Studio Center. Winter won the 2014 Rochelle Ratner Memorial Award and the 2016 Poetry Society of America The Writer Magazine/Emily Dickinson Award. She was the Fall 2015 Ralph Johnston Fellow at the University of Texas’s Dobie Paisano Ranch.


The Finalists

J. J. Hernandez, for “And When a Country Tells Its People Its Has All the Power and They Do Nothing, It Does”
Gabe Membreno, for “google search for vegan sancocho”
Jennifer Lai, for “What the Kids in Subtle Asian Traits Know”
Sheng Kao, for “extinct/extant (a zuihitsu)”
Gabrielle Bates, for “Aubade that Ends Closer to the Water than it Begins”
Jack Jung, for “Eating Blowfish”
Darius Simpson, for “WORD PROBLEMS”


The Longlist

Aaron Coleman
Ashley-Elisabeth Best
Ashna Ali
Baba Badji
Christopher Shipman
Connor Yeck
David Giannini
Deborah Buchanan
Diyavsri Krishnan
Faylita Hicks
Helen Almaraz
Hiya Chowdhury
Jane Huffman
Jed Myers
John Allen
John Wolff
Juhi (Shooooz) Farooqui
Julia Kolchinsky Dasbach
Kayleb Rae Candrill
Khailla Shanne
Lindsey Royce
Liz Kicak
Louise Dilenge
Marco Yan
Michael Weinstein
Michelle Tejada
Mónica Gomery
Nancy Miller Gomez
Nick Harp
Nneoma Kanu
Olivia Brown
Pamela Hart
Patrick James Errington
Riley Huff
Rushi Vyas
Sheleen McElhinney
William McDonald
Zachariah Claypole White