2023 Resistance & Resilience Prize Winners & Finalists


We are delighted to share the winners, finalists, and longlist for the 2023 Resistance & Resilience Prize! Please help us congratulate these up and coming poets. Deep gratitude to all who shared moving poems with us—we are so lucky to have been immersed in the worlds of your work. The winning poem and runner-ups were selected by Natasha Rao and are published on the Palette website.

Winners of the 2023 Resistance & Resilience Prize

1st place — Bazeed for “kh like khummus

Bazeed is a multi–award winning Egyptian immigrant, poet, playwright, performance artist, stage actor, editor, translator, curator, and cook, living in Brooklyn. An alliteration-leaning writer of prose, poetry, plays, and pantry lists, their work across genres has been published in print and online, and their plays performed in festivals on both sides of the Atlantic. Their first play, peace camp org, an autobiographical queer anti-Zionist musical(ish) comedy about summer camp, is published by Oberon Books, UK, and won them the Dramatists Guild’s Lanford Wilson Award for creative promise in 2021. They are currently at work on their third full-length play, faggy faafi Cairo boy, and on their debut novel, The Boy Made of Air. To procrastinate from facing the blank page, Bazeed curates and runs a monthly(ish) world-music salon and open mic in Brooklyn, and is a slow student of Arabic music. 

2nd place — Maurya Kerr for “Banjo Be

Maurya Kerr is a bay area-based writer and artist. Her poetry has been nominated for Pushcart and Best of the Net prizes and appears in multiple journals, including Magma Poetry, Poet Lore, and an anthology, “The Future of Black: Afrofuturism, Black Comics, and Superhero Poetry.” Much of her artistic work, across disciplines, is focused on black and brown people reclaiming their birthright to both wonderment and the quotidian. Maurya was a 2021/22 UC Berkeley ARC Poetry & the Senses Fellow, chosen by Jericho Brown as a runner-up in Southern Humanities Review’s 2021 Auburn Witness Poetry Prize, and won the 2022 Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest. Her first chapbook, ‘MUTTOLOGY,’ was recently published by Small Harbor Publishing, and her second, ‘tommy noun.’ is forthcoming with C&R Press spring of 2024.

3rd place — Christopher Watson for “Sharper Than

Though his roots are in Santa Fe, NM, Christopher Watson spent his first years in Mexico City. He studied classics at graduate and post-graduate levels, before living between Barcelona and London. Christopher completed his MFA in creative writing at Middlesex University (UK). He has published in the Malpais Review, Magma Poetry, Cagibi and Dark Mountain (among others); and is a volunteer translator for Santa Fe Dreamers Project.


Tenny Liu

Amir Mclam

Sabrina Spence

Andrew Garvin

Fred Schmalz and Susy Bielak

Kathryn Ugoretz



Justin Groppuso-Cook

Mickie Kennedy

Amanda Maret Scharf

Brian Gyamfi

Melina Draper

Aliyah Blattner

Diana Cao

Michael Imossan

Jarret Whelan

Andres Cordoba

Syble Heffernan

Churan Xu

Laura Joyce-Hubbard

Larry Ruth

Zorina Frey

Hypatia Sorunke

Yumiko Gonzalez Rios