We are pleased to announce the winner of the 2022 Palette Chapbook Prize! Please help us congratulate Joshua Aiken and our finalists and longlisted poets. Deep gratitude to all who shared excellent chapbooks with us. The winning chapbook was selected by guest judge Chen Chen and will receive a $2000 award, free digital publication, and 50 complimentary physical copies in Fall 2023.
Winner of the 2022 Palette Chapbook Prize
Joshua Aiken for to be in & of
Joshua Aiken is a poet and black studies scholar. He is a J.D./Ph.D. candidate in History and African-American Studies at Yale where his research focuses on the relationship between the regulation of firearms in the United States, state-sanctioned violence, and racial hierarchy since the Civil War. His research more broadly is concerned with 20th-century histories of how violence sanctioned and facilitated by “equal justice under law” has shaped and been shaped by racial capitalism, settler empire, and anti-blackness. He is interested in how race, gender, sexuality and ability relate to legalized notions of danger, safety, criminality, depravity and deviance.
Joshua is also a Cave Canem Fellow and winner of the Martin Starke Prize. His poetry can be found in publications like Assaracus, BOAAT, Copper Nickel, Green Mountains Review, Sixth Finch, The Indianapolis Review, and Muzzle Magazine.
Of the winning chapbook, Chen Chen said:
“So who is this healing really for?” wonders one poem in this collection full of wondering and wonderment, this constellation of poems spilling over with the vast aches of a heart so attuned to life, loss, and more life. To step into the world of to be in & of is to understand the in’s and of’s that shape an ever-shifting Black queer existence and imagination—how a preposition can be a position, a perspective, a power: imposed or embraced, relived or revised. To step into the gorgeous, dizzying cosmos of this chapbook is to declare “we’re raunchy, we’re righteous,” to sing “we kissed, & for weeks nothing was my enemy,” and ultimately, to “invent a galaxy of sound.”
Chen Chen named Miguel Barretto García‘s chapbook soft innocence as the runner-up.
For Eve, Which Means Life. Means Animal. by Nicole Adabunu
a nation without an anthem is just a body by Aida Bardissi
All the Women I Love Work Overtime by Adelina Rose Gowans
So Much Sun by Gurmeet Kaur
War Food by Milica Mijatović
A New Engine for Softening Bones by Anna Newman
Birthroot by Lisa Marie Oliver
linda harris dolan
Wenmimareba Klobah Collins