Yale Series of Younger Poets
The Yale Series of Younger Poets is an annual event of Yale University Press aiming to publish the debut collection of a promising American poet. Established in 1918, the Younger Poets Prize is the longest-running annual literary award in the United States.
|Publisher||Yale University Press|
|Published||Annually since 1919|
|No. of books||114|
Each year, the Younger Poets Competition accepts submissions from American poets who have not previously published a book of poetry. Once the judge has chosen a winner, the Press publishes a book-length manuscript of the winner's poetry as the next volume in the series. All poems must be original, and only one manuscript may be entered at a time.
Rules and eligibilityEdit
Contest requirements were first articulated in the summer of 1920. The series had already published four books, all written by Yale students, and the judges sought to attract a nationwide pool of applicants. A promotional statement gave the following, somewhat vague eligibility requirements: "Anyone is eligible provided he (or she) is young and comparatively unknown. The age limit is understood to be about thirty." A formal set of rules was adopted in 1924. In addition to specifying page limits and other manuscript requirements, these new rules limited the contest to American citizens younger than 30. Although the contest was briefly opened to any writer of English-language poetry under Auden's judgeship, it has remained limited to American citizens ever since.
The Younger Poets Series was established in 1919 by Clarence Day, whose brother George Parmly Day had founded Yale University Press with his wife Wilhelmine in 1908. The competition's first judge, Charlton M. Lewis, was a prominent professor in Yale's English department. The inaugural competition took place after the end of World War I, just as an influx of young veterans returned from fighting in Europe and entered college. Modernist poetry emerged in this period, but early entries in the series reflected the neoclassical tastes of the older generation adjudicating the competition, all men who had received degrees from Yale in the late-19th century. The anglophilic publishers were heavily influenced by English poetry, especially the contemporary Georgian poetry, and the competition itself was directly influenced by the similar "Adventures All" poetry series of Oxford University Press.
The contest solidified its importance in American literature under the judgeship of Stephen Vincent Benét. Benet was judge from 1933 to 1942, followed by Archibald MacLeish from 1944 to 1946. Margaret Walker's For My People was the last volume selected by Benet. Auden assumed the judgeship after MacLeish. The contest is regarded by some to have been at its height from 1947 to 1959, when W. H. Auden was choosing the winners. His then-young poets included Adrienne Rich, James Wright, W. S. Merwin, John Ashbery, and John Hollander. The period was also notable for the two-time refusal of Sylvia Plath's manuscript Two Lovers, and Colossus which was subsequently published in England. The 1969–1977 period, overseen by Stanley Kunitz, included volumes by Carolyn Forché and Robert Hass; Hass later became the Poet Laureate of the United States. The judgeship of W. S. Merwin, from 1998 to 2003, was fraught with controversy, as he refused to select a winner the first year that he was judge. Louise Glück, who is widely considered to have revived the prize's stature, judged the award from 2003 to 2010. Carl Phillips is the current judge.
The year column provides the date of the competition. The winning poetry collections are published the following year.
|1918||1||Howard Buck||The Tempering||Charlton M. Lewis|||
|2||John C. Farrar||Forgotten Shrines|||
|1919||3||David Osborne Hamilton||Four Gardens|||
|4||Alfred Raymond Bellinger||Spires and Poplars|||
|5||Thomas Caldecot Chubb||The White God and Other Poems|||
|6||Darl MacLeod Boyle||Where Lilith Dances|||
|1920||7||Theodore H. Jr. Banks||Wild Geese|||
|8||Viola C. White||Horizons|||
|9||Hervey Allen||Wampum and Old Gold|||
|10||Oscar Williams||Golden Darkness|||
|1921||11||Harold Vinal||White April|||
|12||Medora C. Addison||Dreams and a Sword|||
|13||Bernard Raymund||Hidden Waters|||
|1922||15||Dean B. Jr. Lyman||The Last Lutanist|||
|16||Amos Niven Wilder||Battle-Retrospect|||
|17||Marion M. Boyd||Silver Wands||Frederick E. Pierce|||
|18||Beatrice E. Harmon||Mosaics|||
|1923||19||Elizabeth Jessup Blake||Up and Down||Edward Bliss Reed|||
|1924||20||Dorothy E. Reid||Coach into Pumpkin||William Alexander Percy|||
|22||Thomas Hornsby Ferril||High Passage|||
|1926||23||Lindley Williams Hubbell||Dark Pavilion|||
|1927||24||Mildred Bowers||Twist o' Smoke|||
|25||Ted Olson||A Stranger and Afraid|||
|26||Francis Claiborne Mason||This Unchanging Mask|||
|1928||27||Frances M. Frost||Hemlock Wall|||
|28||Henri Faust||Half-Light and Overture|||
|1930||30||Dorothy Belle Flanagan (aka Dorothy B. Hughes)||Dark Certainty|||
|1931||31||Paul Engle||Worn Earth|||
|1932||32||Shirley Barker||The Dark Hills Under||Stephen Vincent Benét|||
|1933||33||James Agee||Permit Me Voyage|||
|1934||34||Muriel Rukeyser||Theory of Flight|||
|1935||35||Edward Weismiller||The Deer Come Down|||
|1936||36||Margaret Haley||The Gardener Mind|||
|1937||37||Joy Davidman||Letter to a Comrade|||
|1938||38||Reuel Denney||The Connecticut River and Other Poems|||
|1939||39||Norman Rosten||Return Again, Traveler|||
|1940||40||Jeremy Ingalls||The Metaphysical Sword|||
|1941||41||Margaret Walker||For My People|||
|1942||No winner selected||Archibald MacLeish|||
|1943||42||William Morris Jr. Meredith||Love Letters from an Impossible Land|||
|1944||43||Charles E. Butler||Cut Is the Branch|||
|1945||44||Eve Merriam||Family Circle|||
|1946||45||Joan Murray||Poems||W. H. Auden|||
|1947||46||Robert Horan||A Beginning|||
|1948||47||Rosalie Moore||The Grasshopper's Man and Other Poems|||
|1949||No winner selected|||
|1950||48||Adrienne Rich||A Change of World|||
|1951||49||W. S. Merwin||A Mask for Janus|||
|1952||50||Edgar Bogardus||Various Jangling Keys|||
|1953||51||Daniel Hoffman||An Armada of Thirty Whales|||
|1954||No winner selected|||
|1955||52||John Ashbery||Some Trees|||
|1956||53||James Wright||The Green Wall|||
|1957||54||John Hollander||A Crackling of Thorns|||
|1958||55||Dickey||Of the Festivity|||
|1959||56||George Starbuck||Bone Thoughts||Dudley Fitts|||
|1961||58||Jack Gilbert||Views of Jeopardy|||
|1962||59||Sandra Hochman||Manhattan Pastures|||
|1963||60||Peter Davison||The Breaking of the Day|||
|1964||61||Jean Valentine||Dream Barker|||
|1965||No winner selected|||
|1966||62||James Tate||The Lost Pilot|||
|1967||63||Helen Chasin||Coming Close and Other Poems|||
|1968||64||Judith Johnson Sherwin||Uranium Poems|||
|1969||65||Hugh Seidman||Collecting Evidence||Stanley Kunitz|||
|1970||66||Peter Klappert||Lugging Vegetables to Nantucket|||
|1972||68||Robert Hass||Field Guide|||
|1973||69||Michael Ryan||Threats Instead of Trees|||
|1974||70||Maura Stanton||Snow on Snow|||
|1975||71||Carolyn Forché||Gathering the Tribes|||
|1976||72||Olga Broumas||Beginning with O|||
|1977||73||Bin Ramke||The Difference Between Night and Day||Richard Hugo|||
|1978||74||Leslie Ullman||Natural Histories|||
|1979||75||William Virgil Davis||One Way to Reconstruct the Scene|||
|1980||76||John Bensko||Green Soldiers|||
|1981||77||David Wojahn||Icehouse Lights|||
|1982||78||Cathy Song||Picture Bride|||
|1983||79||Richard Kenney||The Evolution of the Flightless Bird||James Merrill|||
|1984||80||Pamela Alexander||Navigable Waterways|||
|1985||81||George Bradley||Terms to Be Met|||
|1986||82||Julie Agoos||Above the Land|||
|1987||83||Brigit Pegeen Kelly||To the Place of Trumpets|||
|1988||84||Thomas Bolt||Out of the Woods|||
|1989||85||Daniel Hall||Hermit with Landscape|||
|1990||86||Christiane Jacox Kyle||Bears Dancing in the Northern Air||James Dickey|||
|1991||87||Nicholas Samaras||Hands of the Saddlemaker|||
|1992||88||Jody Gladding||Stone Crop|||
|1993||89||Valerie Wohlfeld||Thinking the World Visible|||
|1994||90||Tony Crunk||Living in the Resurrection|||
|1995||91||Ellen Hinsey||Cities of Memory|||
|1996||92||Talvikki Ansel||My Shining Archipelago|||
|1997||No winner selected||W. S. Merwin|||
|1999||94||Davis McCombs||Ultima Thule|||
|2000||95||Maurice Manning||Lawrence Booth's Book of Visions|||
|2002||97||Loren Goodman||Famous Americans|||
|2003||98||Peter Streckfus||The Cuckoo|||
|2004||99||Richard Siken||Crush||Louise Glück|||
|2005||100||Jay Hopler||Green Squall|||
|2007||102||Fady Joudah||The Earth in the Attic|||
|2008||103||Arda Collins||It Is Daylight|||
|2010||105||Katherine Larson||Radial Symmetry|||
|2011||106||Eduardo C. Corral||Slow Lightning||Carl Phillips|||
|2014||109||Ansel Elkins||Blue Yodel|||
|2015||110||Noah Warren||The Destroyer in the Glass|||
|2016||111||Airea D. Matthews||simulacra|||
|2017||112||Duy Doan||We Play a Game|||
|2018||113||Yanyi||The Year of Blue Water|||
|2019||114||Jill Osier||The Solace Is Not the Lullaby|||
- Yale University Press 2019, p. 1.
- Bradley 1998, p. xxix.
- Bradley 1998, pp. xxxiii–xxxiv.
- Bradley 1998, p. xxxiv.
- Bradley 1998, p. xxxiv–xxxv.
- Bradley 1998, p. xxii.
- Bradley 1998, pp. xxiv–xxvi.
- Bradley 1998, p. xxi.
- Bradley 1998, pp. xxii–xxiii.
- Bradley 1998, pp. xxiii–xxiv.
- Bradley 1998, p. 50.
- Davison 1998.
- Alexander 2003, pp. 208–209.
- O'Rourke 2008.
- Phillips 2019, p. 389.
- Bradley 1998, p. v.
- Bradley 1998, p. vi.
- Bradley 1998, p. vii.
- Bradley 1998, p. viii.
- Bradley 1998, p. ix.
- Bradley 1998, p. x.
- Bradley 1998, p. xi.
- Bradley 1998, p. xii.
- Bradley 1998, p. xiii.
- Bradley 1998, p. xiv.
- Bradley 1998, p. xv.
- Bradley 1998, p. xvi.
- Phillips 2019b.
- Phillips 2019, p. 392.
- Harriet staff 2019. Harv error: no target: CITEREFHarriet_staff2019 (help)
- Anon. (March 13, 2013). "Eryn Green Wins Yale Younger Poets Prize". Poets & Writers.
- Anon. (February 17, 2015). "Carl Phillips Chooses Noah Warren As 2015 Yale Series Of Younger Poets Winner". Yale University Press.
- Anon. (2019). "Yale Series of Younger Poets – Celebrating 100 Years [brochure]" (PDF). Yale University Press. Archived (PDF) from the original on November 16, 2019.
- Alexander, Paul (2003). Rough Magic: A Biography of Sylvia Path (2nd. ed.). Da Capo Press. ISBN 978-0-306-81299-6 – via Google Books.
- Bradley, George, ed. (1998). The Yale Younger Poets Anthology. Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-07472-7 – via the Internet Archive (registration required).
- Davison, Peter (June 1998). "Discovering Young Poets". The Atlantic.
- Kellogg, Carolyn (March 3, 2014). "Yale Younger Poets Prize goes to Ansel Elkins". Los Angeles Times.
- O'Rourke, Meghan (August 2008). "On Louise Glück and the Yale Series of Younger Poets". The Kenyon Review.
- Phillips, Carl, ed. (2019). Firsts: 100 Years of Yale Younger Poets. Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-24316-1 – via Google Books.
- ——— (October 23, 2019). "The Yale Younger Poets Prize: A Microcosm of the American Poetry Landscape". Literary Hub. Archived from the original on October 29, 2019.