On Wednesday, April 13, County College of Morris (CCM) will host a reception to celebrate the publication of the 2016 issue of the “Journal of New Jersey Poets” and honor this year’s New Jersey Poets Prize recipient, Timothy Walsh.
The event, featuring a reading, book signing and reception, is free and open to the public. It begins at 7 p.m. in the Davidson Rooms of the Student Community Center on the college’s Randolph campus, 214 Center Grove Road.
The “Journal of New Jersey Poets,” the only annual compendium of poetry by authors who were born, raised or have an association with the state, began at Fairleigh Dickinson University, which published the first issue in 1975. CCM has been home to the journal since 1990, and 2016 will mark the seventh year of the New Jersey Poets Prize.
This year’s issue is dedicated to Dr. Edward J. Yaw, who retires at the end of August after more than 30 years as CCM’s president. Yaw’s presidency has been marked by its support of the arts.
Walsh will read his winning poem, “My Father’s Royal Standard.” His most recent poetry collections are “When the World Was Rear-Wheel Drive: New Jersey Poems” and “The Book of Arabella.” His awards include the Grand Prize in the Atlanta Review International Poetry Competition, the Kurt Vonnegut Fiction Prize from North American Review, and the Wisconsin Academy Fiction Prize. He is the author of a book of literary criticism, “The Dark Matter of Words: Absence, Unknowing, and Emptiness in Literature” (Southern Illinois University Press) and two other poetry collections, “Wild Apples” (Parallel Press) and “Blue Lace Colander” (Marsh River Editions).
Honorable Mention winners this year are Sheila Duane for “The Laundress,” Laurie Byro for “27 Rue de Fleurus,” Lois Marie Harrod for “The Man Who Received One Talent” and “The Past is Never Where You Left It,” Michael Mandzik for “Frozen Funds,” and Marvin Silbersher for “Leaves of Grass.”
The ceremony will also honor both Marvin Silbersher and Linda A. Cronin, two poets who have had long relationships with the journal—and are published in the 2016 issue—who passed away this year.
Other distinguished poets attending will include Charles H. Johnson, Richard Krohn, Wanda Praisner, Chuck Tripi, Cheryl Racanelli, Ruth Holzer, and John Bargowski, among others.
This year marks the 42nd anniversary of the journal’s publication. Poets who have read at CCM include such national figures as Allen Ginsberg, James Wright, Stephen Dobyns, Ishmael Reed and the United States Consultants in Poetry/U.S. Poets Laureate William Stafford, Howard Nemerov, Gwendolyn Brooks, Elizabeth Bishop, Donald Hall and Philip Levine.
“We are pleased to include so many excellent works in this year’s issue, one which is dedicated to Dr. Edward J. Yaw, someone who has always shown his support of poetry and the arts,” said CCM Professor Emily Birx, editor of the “Journal of New Jersey Poets.” “Timothy Walsh is a worthy recipient of the Poets Prize in this special issue.”
For more information about the event call 973-328-5463 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
# # #Photos: Timothy Walsh, the winner of this year’s New Jersey Poets Prize. Walsh will be honored and will read his award-winning poem “My Father’s Royal Standard” at the “Journal of New Jersey Poets” publication reception at County College of Morris on Wednesday, April 13, at 7 p.m. in the Davidson Rooms of the Student Community Center on the college’s Randolph campus.
Photo Courtesy of Timothy Walsh