Yale University Press is pleased to announce a winner in the 2019 Yale Series of Younger Poets competition. The judge, prize-winning and critically acclaimed poet Carl Phillips, has chosen Jill Osier’s manuscript, The Solace Is Not the Lullaby.
Series judge Carl Phillips says: “‘It might have happened/at the river,’ begins one poem, called ‘Story,’ after which we are told several things, but never what happened, or to whom – a situation that could, in less capable hands, lead to reader frustration. But the poems of Osier’s The Solace Is Not the Lullaby quietly, cumulatively, persuasively argue for restraint and precision (both too often forgotten in contemporary poetry) as tools for the confession that the art of story – of telling – finally amounts to. The poems give record not to what’s been lost, but to the knowing ‘you may have had something/but lost it.’ The knowing, suggests Osier, may well be enough, or have to be. Her poems announce what must suffice: ‘We have seen every edge, they say,/and you were right.’ Osier’s is a sensibility unlike any I’ve encountered before – the poems here are thrilling, and strangely new.”
Yale University Press will publish Osier’s book in April 2020. The manuscript is Phillips’ ninth selection as judge and the 114th volume in the series. Carl Phillips’ eighth selection, Yanyi’s The Year of Blue Water, will be published by Yale University Press on March 26, 2019.
Jill Osier is an American poet who was born in Iowa and now lives in Alaska. Her poetry appears in three chapbooks and in such journals as Crazyhorse, The Georgia Review, Ploughshares, Poetry, and The Southern Review. A recipient of an NEA Fellowship, Osier has served as the Diane Middlebrook Poetry Fellow at the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing, the Chapbook Fellow at The Frost Place, and the George Bennett Fellow at Phillips Exeter Academy. Honors for her work include the Campbell Corner Poetry Prize and Poetry Society of America’s Alice Fay Di Castagnola Award.
Awarded since 1919 by Yale University Press, this year marks the centennial of the Yale Series of Younger Poets prize celebrating the most prominent new American poets by bringing the work of these artists to the attention of the larger public. Earlier winners of the prize include such talents as Adrienne Rich, John Ashbery, and Robert Hass. It is the longest-running poetry prize in the United States.
Yale University Press will also continue its partnership with The James Merrill House. Winners of the Series will receive one of the five writing fellowships offered at The James Merrill House in Stonington, CT. The fellowship provides a furnished living space and daily access to James Merrill’s apartment for a writer in search of a quiet setting to complete a project of literary or academic merit.
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