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Maryland in Poetry Contest Winners

MWA members and non-MWA Maryland residents were invited to submit poems about or set in Maryland. The three contest judges, poet Sue Ellen Thompson (Pulitzer Prize nominee), Steven Leyva (Cave Canem Fellow and Little Patuxent Review Editor), and Grace Cavalieri (Poet Laureate of Maryland), chose the following Contest Winners:

  • First Place: John O’Dell, After Defibrillation
  • Second Place: Marc Drexler, Baltimore 1977
  • Third Place: John O’Dell, For Tom Who Says He’s Slipping
  • Honorable Mention: Meg Kuyatt, Gambrills Elegy
  • Honorable Mention: Michael Ratcliffe, After Sterling


The winning poems are published in MWA’s latest anthology, Maryland in Poetry, available on Amazon.com. The poems in this publication reflect our state's diversity both in the writers who bared their hearts to us and the subjects they chose to tackle. Our rich history, racial struggles, Baltimore’s inner city, prison, shootings, and also the spectacular beauty of the Bay and Maryland’s natural habitat are all represented here.

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