Poetry Prize

For the 2024 contest, the Autumn House staff as well as select outsider readers serve as the preliminary readers, and the final judge is Kazim Ali. The winner receives publication of their full-length manuscript and $2,500. The submission period opens May 1, 2024, and closes June 30, 2024 (Eastern Time). We will announce the finalists and the winner of the contest by October 1, 2024. 

All fee waivers for the 2024 Poetry Prize have been spoken for; we apologize for any inconvenience.

Guidelines for the Autumn House Poetry Prize

  • The winner will receive book publication, a $1,000 honorarium, and a $1,500 travel/publicity grant to promote their book
  • All finalists will be considered for publication
  • Poetry submissions should be approximately 50-80 pages
  • Each new poem should start on a new page
  • Illustrations are strongly discouraged and should not comprise more than a quarter of the book
  • The reading fee is $35
  • The book should be previously unpublished
  • We only accept original manuscripts; AI-generated or AI-supported works are not accepted
  • Do not include your name anywhere on the actual manuscript; if your name appears within the body of the text, please omit it or black it out (first name is fine, but last name must be omitted)
  • You may include a brief bio in the “cover letter” section of Submittable
  • Do not include a bio or an acknowledgments page in the manuscript
  • Feel free to include a table of contents (This does not count as part of your final page count)
  • Simultaneous submissions permitted
  • Friends, family members, and former students of judges or Autumn House editors may not submit to the contest. Students do not include interactions at short-term residencies or fellowships.
  • Former employees of Autumn House, including interns, may not submit to the contest.

If you have any questions, please check our FAQ page.

Kazim Ali was born in the United Kingdom and has lived transnationally in the United States, Canada, India, France, and the Middle East. His books encompass multiple genres, including the volumes of poetry Inquisition, Sky Ward, winner of the Ohioana Book Award in Poetry; The Far Mosque, winner of Alice James Books’ New England/New York Award; The Fortieth DayAll One’s Blue; and the cross-genre texts Bright Felon and Wind Instrument. He is also an accomplished translator (of Marguerite Duras, Sohrab Sepehri, Ananda Devi, Mahmoud Chokrollahi and others) and an editor of several anthologies and books of criticism. After a career in public policy and organizing, Ali taught at various colleges and universities, including Oberlin College, Davidson College, St. Mary’s College of California, and Naropa University. He is currently a Professor of Literature at the University of California, San Diego. His newest books are a volume of three long poems entitled The Voice of Sheila Chandra and a memoir of his Canadian childhood, Northern Light.


Winners of the Autumn House Poetry Prize

Year Author Title Judge
2023 Darius Atefat-Peckham Book of Kin January Gill O’Neil
2022 Jennifer Conlon Taking to Water Carl Phillips
2021 Sara R. Burnett Seed Celestial Eileen Myles
2020 Shayla Lawz speculation, n. Ilya Kaminsky
2019 makalani bandele under the aegis of a winged mind Cornelius Eady
2018 Charles Kell Cage of Lit Glass Kimiko Hahn
2017 Melissa Cundieff  Darling Nova Alberto Ríos
2016 Jane Satterfield Apocalypse Mix David St. John
2015 Brian Swann St. Francis and the Flies Dorianne Laux
2014 Ellery Akers Practicing the Truth Alicia Ostriker
2013 Danusha Lameris The Moons of August Naomi Shihab Nye
2012 Chelsea Rathburn A Raft of Grief Stephen Dunn
2011 Brian Brodeur Natural Causes Denise Duhamel
2010 Corrinne Clegg Hales To Make It Right Claudia Emerson
2009 Jacqueline Berger The Gift that Arrives Broken Alicia Ostriker
2008 Mary Crockett Hill A Theory of Everything Naomi Shihab Nye
2007 Miriam Levine The Dark Opens Mark Doty
2006 Nancy Pagh No Sweeter Fat Tim Seibles
2005 Ada Limon lucky wreck Jean Valentine
2004 Ruth L. Schwartz Dear Good Naked Morning Alicia Ostriker
2003 Deborah Slicer The White Calf Kicks Naomi Shihab Nye


We strive to run our contests ethically and subscribe to CLMP’s guidelines. We encourage you to reach out if you are uncertain about a potential conflict of interest.