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Announcing the Finalists for the 2020 Big Other Book Award for Poetry!


We are excited to announce the finalists for the 2020 Big Other Book Award for Poetry. The winner will be announced April 8, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. at the 2020 Big Other Book Awards Ceremony.

All the books below are linked to their respective pages at Bookshop. Visit the Big Other Shop there, where you can find the list of finalists in its entirety.

Without further ado, here are the finalists for the 2020 Big Other Book Award for Poetry:

George Abraham’s Birthright (Button Poetry)

Rae Armantrout’s Conjure (Wesleyan)

Sasha Banks’s america, MINE (co•im•press)

Mei-mei Berssenbrugge’s A Treatise on Stars (New Directions)

Tommye Blount’s Fantasia for the Man in Blue (Four Way Books)

Don Mee Choi’s DMZ Colony (Wave Books)

Andrea Clark Libin’s Orphan of the Moon (Wet Cement Press)

Laura Cronk’s Ghost Hour (Persea)

Cynthia Cruz’s Guidebooks for the Dead (Four Way Books)

Adam O. Davis’s Index of Haunted Houses (Sarabande Books)

Natalie Diaz’s Postcolonial Love Poem (Graywolf)

Rebecca A. Durham’s Half-Life of Empathy (New Rivers Press)

Aricka Foreman’s Salt Body Shimmer (YesYes Books)

Ted Greenwald and Charles Bernstein’s The Course (Roof Books)

Roy G. Guzmán’s Catrachos (Graywolf)

Albert Mobilio’s Same Faces (Black Square Editions)

John Murillo’s Kontemporary Amerikan Poetry (Four Way Books)

Sawako Nakayasu’s Some Girls Walk Into the Country They Are From (Wave Books)

Gale Marie Thompson’s Helen or My Hunger (YesYes Books)

Poetics for the More-Than-Human World: An Anthology of Poetry and Commentary (Dispatches Editions), edited by Mary Newell, Bernard Quetchenbach, and Sarah Nolan


  • John Madera is the author of Nervosities (Anti-Oedipus Press, 2024). His other fiction is published in Conjunctions, Salt Hill, The &Now Awards 2: The Best Innovative Writing, and many other journals. His nonfiction is published in American Book Review, Bookforum, The Review of Contemporary Fiction, Rain Taxi: Review of Books, The Believer, The Brooklyn Rail, and many other venues. Recipient of an M.F.A. in Literary Arts from Brown University, New York State Council on the Arts awardee John Madera lives in New York City, Rhizomatic and manages and edits Big Other.

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