Contest Winners

In issue 49.2, BYU Studies Poetry Editor Casualene Meyer asks the contest judges to give their views on what makes good poetry. This insightful piece gives readers and budding poets a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the knowledge and attitudes of those who live in the world of words.

From its earliest days BYU Studies has sought after and published the very best of Latter-day Saint scholarship. In addition to presenting excellent research and analytic articles, for nearly two decades we have explored personal and creative works by sponsoring annual writing contests for poetry and essays. Just as academic works are peer-reviewed, these creative works are judged by scholars of creative writing. The winning essays and poetry are beautiful expressions of faith and striving, filled with insight and clarity. The authors invite us to journey by their sides as they examine the struggles, devotions, joys, and sorrows of life lived from a uniquely Mormon perspective.

You can see the winning poems and essays by clicking on the links below.

Clinton F. Larson Poetry Contest

Year Author Title
2020 Daniel F. Teichert "Mystery and Dance" (tie)
2020 Tyler Chadwick "Psalter for the Eternal Mother" (tie)
2019 J.S. Absher "The Creator Praises Birds"
2018 Daniel F. Teichert "Mystery and Dance"
2017 Scott Cameron "I Have Traced a Jagged Autumn"
2016 Benjamin Blackhurst "Almost a Psalm, about Inheritance"
2015 John A. Cutler "Feast of Epiphany"
2014 Jared Pearce "Foundry"
2013 Dixie Partridge "Late States of Being"
2012 Marilyn Nielson "This Beginning of Miracles"
2011 Dixie Partridge "Hourglass"
2010 David J. Passey "City Dog"
2009 Norma S. Bowkett "Clocks Have Not Stopped"
2008 Christopher C. Lund "Tunica Doloris"
2007 MaryJan Gay Munger "After Sorrow"
2006 Michael Hicks "Day Seven"
2004 Richard Tice "As Fire"
2003 Michael Hicks "Museum of Ancient Life"
2002 Donnell Hunter "Chilean Spring"
2001 Michael Hicks "Deluge"
2000 Ellen Gregory "A Riddle for Didymus"
1999 Ken Haubrock "Three Women in Church"
1998 James Richards "Adam's Song"
1996 Michael Hicks "Altarpiece"
1995 Jennie Rae Leishman "This Woman Is Full"

Richard H. Cracroft Personal Essay Contest

Year Author Title
2020 Elena Jarvis Jube "Peace Offering" (tie)
2020 Kim Webb Reid "The Road to Dallas" (tie)
2019 Robbie Taggart "Burning the Couch"
2018 Patrick L. Moran "Wandering on to Glory"
2017 Kim Webb Reid "Aviophobia"
2016 Wendy Payne "To Live"
2015 Josh Weed "Saying Goodbye"
2014 Elizabeth Knight "Hunting"
2013 No prize awarded  
2012 Kylie Nielson Turley "Tempering: Of Tree Houses and Tragedies"
2011 No prize awarded  
2010 Eric d'Evegnee "The Paternity Test"
2009 Holly Rose Hansen "Yellow Shirt Riddles"
2008 Lynda Mackey Wilson "We Who Owe Everything to a Name"
2007 James M. Thorne "Old Folsom Prison—East Gate"
2006 Sheldon Lawrence "O Lord, My God"
2004 Marilyn Nelson Nielson "Reality through Reflection"
2003 Jane D. Brady "Falling Leaves"
2002 Brett Walker "Miles to Go before I Sleep"
2000 Brett Walker "Vernal Equinox"
1999 Melissa Helquist "Voice Lessons"
1998 Patrick Madden "Luis Silva"
1997 Tessa Meyer Santiago "Take, Eat"
1996 Philip C. du Toit "Roots: Epistemology of Youth"