UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS PRESS POET WINS THE POETS’ PRIZEWednesday, February 20, 2002
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Poet Robert Mezey has won this year's Poets' Prize, one of the most prestigious prizes in the poetry world, for his book Collected Poems, 1952-1999, published by the University of Arkansas Press ($22.00, paper).
The winner of the Poets' Prize can truly be called a poets' poet. As its name implies, the judges are themselves poets. And they put up their own money for the $3,000 award: 20 famous poets each contribute $500, and each nominates a book as the best of the year. Past winners include Adrienne Rich, Wendell Berry and Miller Williams, the founder and longtime director of the University of Arkansas Press.
The prize includes a trip to New York City, where Mezey will accept the award and read poems from his book at a gala event at the Nicholas Roerich Museum on May 16. Poets Wyatt Prunty and Richard Wilbur, who won honorable mentions, will also attend and read from their books.
Robert Mezey has lived in Claremont, California, for many years, where he is an emeritus professor at Pomona College. He won the Lamont Prize for his book The Lovemaker (1960), and has edited a number of books, including recent editions of Hardy and Robinson. His poems and translations have appeared in many magazines and anthologies.
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