A poetry award named for Mark and Elaine Fischer – two Colorado creatives and champions of the arts. Mark was a brilliant lawyer poet who died young, and Elaine his artist widow who went on to become Mayor of Telluride and a San Miguel County Commissioner for four terms (2000-2016). She passed away Memorial Day weekend 2016.
Started in 1997, the Fischer Prize began with the Telluride Writers Guild, at the instigation of Art Goodtimes, was sustained for many years by the Telluride Council on the Arts & Humanities (which became Telluride Arts) and by Elaine Fischer, and most recently was re-energized and expanded by Goodtimes and the Telluride Institute’s Talking Gourds Poetry Program. What started as a county $100 award for local poets, moved to a statewide focus, then a regional Southwestern target audience, followed by a Western U.S. scan and has now widened its scope – making the awards available to poets in the entire country. The current prize award is $1000 for the winning poem plus a $500 travel reimbursement stipend for attending the awards ceremony. In addition, there are five finalist awards of $200 each with $100 travel reimbursement stipend.
New in 2018, thanks to a generous donation from the Cantor Family, we will be initiating a $500 Cantor Award for the winning poem in the Fischer Prize contest from a Colorado poet. That way we will be honoring the Fischer with a national prize, as well as a state prize.This annual award is open to poets of all ages living in the US. Deadline for submissions is May 1st, and the prizes will be awarded at the Telluride Literary Arts Festival on May 18, in Telluride. For more information, contact Galaxy at email@example.com . SUBMISSION INFORMATION
____________________________________________________________________________________________________ 2018 WINNERS Winners selected by final judge, Joan Logghe, of New Mexico.
WINNER of the 2018 Fischer Prize: Michelle Bitting: “Everything Crumbling Becoming Something New” Bitting won $1000, plus a $500 travel stipend, and will be at the festival to read her poem at the awards ceremony on Saturday, May 19th, at Telluride Arts HQ, at 2 pm.
FINALISTS of the 2018 Fischer Prize: D. Baker: “Breathing Water, Swimming Air” Elizabeth Jacobson: “Birds Eating Cherries From the Very Old Tree” Claire Blotter: “Rocking” Jane Hilberry: “Poem Beginning with a Line from Paul Monette” Jose A. Alcantara: “Lady in Rags” The finalists receive $200 and an invitation to read, plus a $100 travel stipend if they come.
WINNER of the 2018 Cantor Prize: Jane Hilberry: “Poem Beginning with a Line from Paul Monette” Awarded to the best poem submitted by a poet from Colorado, this is the award’s inaugural year. The prize is made possible through the support of the Telluride Institute and generous private donations.
Thank you, poets, for sharing your work with the world! -- Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer and Art Goodtimes, co-directors of Talking Gourds Poetry Club
Talking Gourds, a program of the Telluride Institute, hosts the Fischer Prize, in collaboration with Telluride Arts.