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The Griffin Poetry Prize is Canada's most generous poetry award. It was founded in 2000 by businessman and philanthropist Scott Griffin. The awards go to one Canadian and one international poet who writes in the English language.[1]

Griffin Poetry Prize
Griffin Trust For Excellence In Poetry red gryphon logo.jpg
Awarded forCanadian and International awards for poetry written in or translated into English
CountryCanada
Presented byGriffin Trust For Excellence In Poetry and Scott Griffin
First awarded2001
Websitehttp://www.griffinpoetryprize.com

Effective 2010, the annual Griffin Poetry Prize was doubled from CAD$100,000 to CAD$200,000 in recognition of the prize’s tenth anniversary.[2][3] The increased amount of $100,000 will be awarded as follows: CAD$10,000 to each of the seven shortlisted – four international and three Canadian – for their participation in the shortlist readings. The winners, announced at the Griffin Poetry Prize Awards evening, will be awarded CAD$65,000 each, for a total of CAD$75,000 that includes the CAD$10,000 awarded at the readings the previous evening.[2]

Contents

HistoryEdit

In April 2000, Scott Griffin started the Griffin Trust to raise public awareness of the crucial role poetry plays in society's cultural life. Griffin served as its Chairman, with Trustees Margaret Atwood, Robert Hass, Michael Ondaatje, Robin Robertson and David Young. In June 2004, Carolyn Forché joined the board of Trustees. New trustees have been named as follows: in 2014, Karen Solie, Colm Tóibín and Mark Doty, in 2016, Jo Shapcott and Marek Kazmierski, and in 2018, Ian Williams. Margaret Atwood, Robert Hass, Michael Ondaatje, Robin Robertson and Colm Tóibín have assumed the role of Trustees Emeriti.

The Trust created the Griffin Poetry Prize with the aim of helping to introduce contemporary collections of poetry to the public's imagination. Originally, the award was two annual prizes of CAD$40,000 each, for collections of poetry published in English during the preceding year.[4] One prize for a living Canadian poet, the other to a living poet from any other country, which could include Canada. Qualified judges are selected annually by the Trustees. The prize shortlists are announced in April (National Poetry Month) every year. The shortlisted poets gather for an evening of public readings every May/June, and the winners are announced and all of the poets are feted the following evening.

Each year, selections from the shortlisted works are gathered in The Griffin Poetry Prize Anthology[5], typically edited by one of that year's judges. In 2019, House of Anansi Press partnered with the National Network for Equitable Library Services (NNELS) to offer the anthology in print and digital Braille editions.[6]

Eligible collections of poetry must have been published between January 1 and December 31 of the prior year. Submissions must come from publishers only.

In November 2010, Scott Griffin announced a new Griffin Trust initiative called Poetry In Voice/Les voix de la poésie, a bilingual recitation contest for high school students across Canada.[7][8]

The Griffin Trust has championed other initiatives since its inception, including a statue in tribute to poet Al Purdy,[9] participation in international poetry festivals, and donations of poetry books to various organizations, including the Correctional Service of Canada, Scottish Poetry Library and other libraries, schools and colleges.[10]

Finalists, Judges and Lifetime Recognition recipientsEdit

Winners are listed first and highlighted with bold.

2001Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Guest performer at awards ceremony: Gord Downie

2002Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Guest host at awards ceremony: Albert Schultz

2003Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Guest speaker at awards ceremony: Heather McHugh

2004Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

2005Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Guest speaker at awards ceremony: August Kleinzahler

2006Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (presented by the Griffin trustees) to Robin Blaser

Guest speaker at awards ceremony: Simon Armitage

2007Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (presented by the Griffin trustees) to Tomas Tranströmer

Guest speaker at awards ceremony: Matthew Rohrer

2008Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (presented by the Griffin trustees) to Ko Un[15]

Guest speaker at awards ceremony: Paul Farley

2009Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (presented by the Griffin trustees) to Hans Magnus Enzensberger

Guest speaker at awards ceremony: James Wood

2010Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (presented by the Griffin trustees) to Adrienne Rich

Guest speaker at awards ceremony: Glyn Maxwell

2011Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (presented by the Griffin trustees) to Yves Bonnefoy

Guest performer at awards ceremony: Jonathan Welstead, National Poetry In Voice recitation champion

2012Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (presented by the Griffin trustees) to Seamus Heaney

Guest performer at awards ceremony: Alexander Gagliano, National Poetry In Voice recitation champion

2013Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Guest performer at awards ceremony: Kyla Kane, National Poetry In Voice recitation champion

Guest speaker at awards ceremony: Pura López Colomé

2014Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (presented by the Griffin trustees) to Adelia Prado

Guest performer at awards ceremony: Khalil Mair, National Poetry In Voice recitation champion

Guest speaker at awards ceremony: August Kleinzahler

2015Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (presented by the Griffin trustees) to Derek Walcott

Guest performer at awards ceremony: Ayo Akinfenwa, National Poetry In Voice recitation champion

2016Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:[17]

Lifetime Recognition Award (presented by the Griffin trustees) to Adam Zagajewski.[17]

Guest performer at awards ceremony: Marie Foolchand, National Poetry In Voice recitation champion

2017Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (presented by the Griffin trustees) to Frank Bidart.[19]

Guest performer at awards ceremony: David White, National Poetry In Voice recitation finalist

2018Edit

Canada:

International:

Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (announced by the Griffin trustees) to Ana Blandiana.[20]

Guest performer at awards ceremony: Hamish Marissen-Clark, National Poetry In Voice recitation champion

Guest speaker at awards ceremony: August Kleinzahler, 2004 Griffin Poetry Prize winner

2019Edit

Canada:

International:


Judges:

Lifetime Recognition Award (announced by the Griffin trustees) to Nicole Brossard.[21]

Guest performer at awards ceremony: Catricia Hiebert, National Poetry In Voice recitation champion

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Griffin Poetry Prize - Rules".
  2. ^ a b "Griffin Poetry Prize - The Griffin Poetry Prize Announces Prize Award Increase from $100,000 to $200,000 and the 2010 International and Canadian Shortlist".
  3. ^ P. K. Page, Karen Solie, and Kate Hall vie for a more lucrative Griffin (April 6, 2010) - Quill and Quire
  4. ^ New poetry award among literature’s most lucrative - Griffin Poetry Prize "makes a statement" by eclipsing Giller, G-G’s awards (September 9, 2000) - Ottawa Citizen
  5. ^ Griffin Poetry Prize anthologies in House of Anansi Press online catalogue
  6. ^ Poetry You Can Touch (June 4, 2019)
  7. ^ "Bilingual Poetry Recitation Contest Announced - Poetry In Voice".
  8. ^ Poetry gets cool for school: Scott Griffin launches Poetry in Voice (November 23, 2010) - National Post
  9. ^ Literary luminaries attend unveiling of statue of 'people's poet' Al Purdy (May 21, 2008) - The Canadian Press
  10. ^ "Griffin Poetry Prize - About - Initiatives".
  11. ^ "Anne Carson wins poetry prize", CBC News, 8 June 2001.
  12. ^ "Heather McHugh (poet) - USA - Poetry International".
  13. ^ "Christian Bök – Griffin Poetry Prize 2002 – Canadian Winner". The Griffin Trust.
  14. ^ "Another prize for B.C. poet Robin Blaser, and some advice",Vancouver Sun, 6 June 2008.
  15. ^ "Robin Blaser and Ko Un Win Griffin Poetry Prizes!", University of California Press blog, 5 June 2008.
  16. ^ "Griffin Poetry Prize: 2015 – Derek Walcott". Griffin Poetry Prize. Retrieved 14 May 2019.
  17. ^ a b c d Mark Medley (3 June 2016). "'This is a debut book – holy crap': Liz Howard takes the $65,000 Griffin Poetry Prize". The Globe and Sun.
  18. ^ a b "Jordan Abel wins $65K Griffin Poetry Prize for Injun". Retrieved 8 June 2017.
  19. ^ "2017 – Frank Bidart". Retrieved 8 June 2017.
  20. ^ "2018 - Ana Blandiana". Retrieved 11 October 2017.
  21. ^ "2019 - Nicole Brossard". Retrieved 24 April 2019.

External linksEdit