The Hopper Prize for Young Poets Runner-Up

AUGUST 2016

Runner-Up for The Hopper Prize for Young Poets has been awarded to Ellene Glenn Moore, author of the manuscript The Dark Edge of the Bluff, which will be published by Green Writers Press in April 2017.

The Dark Edge of the Bluff engages with the mutable nature of memory and its instantiations: memory as artifact, memory as place, memory as story, memory as compulsion. The poems tackle a vast geography of recollection—from Fiesole to the Okefenokee to the turnings and obsessions of the author’s mind itself. In testing memory’s capacity for multiple truths, and in discovering its inherent limitations, this collection grapples with the simultaneity of memory as an act of self-preservation, self-creation, and relentless re-creation.

Ellene Glenn Moore is a poet living in sunny South Florida. She earned her MFA in creative writing from Florida International University, where she held a John S. and James L. Knight Foundation Fellowship in Poetry, and her BA in creative writing from Carnegie Mellon University. Ellene has been the recipient of a residency at the Studios of Key West and a scholarship to the New York State Summer Writers Institute. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Raleigh Review, Brevity, Best New Poets, Spillway, Chautauqua, Ninth Letter, and elsewhere. Enjoy her poem, "At Carinae Viñedos, Mendoza," from The Dark Edge of the Bluff, below.


Photo by Ellene Glenn Moore

Photo by Ellene Glenn Moore

At Carinae Viñedos, Mendoza

by ELLENE GLENN MOORE

Too late in the season for glimpses of fat gatherings
of Malbec or Cabernet, varietals burgeoning
in the astringent dust of the Uco Valley,
this warm easing-out of fall
basks the mountains in a light almost palpable,
the last twists of red and yellow of the vineyards, arched
espaldero style, protecting the yield from a rare sun
we have not yet come to know. 

But we have gone up into the mountains,
prayed at their feet and let our hands wander
over the desert plants: tawny heads of grasses,
vegetal trumpets,  grey and yellow
as a taste of sun bristling
from behind the low stratus of afternoon.

Now there is nowhere we can go
outside the full-bellied embrace of those mountains,
their bristles and turnings, flooded with afternoon light.
All of the light here is that particular amber,
that maceration of skin and stem,
the world tilting away, loving its own shadow.


The Hopper Prize for Young Poets has been awarded to John Saad for his manuscript Longleaf. John lives and works in Birmingham, Alabama, with his wife and their two dogs. His poetry has appeared recently in Kudzu House and ISLE. He is the state winner of the 2014 Hackney Literary Award for Poetry. This fall, he will move to Virginia to begin his MFA at Hollins University. Read about his manuscript here.

Honorable Mention has been awarded to Emily K. Michael for her manuscript Natural Compliance. Emily is a blind poet, musician, and college writing instructor from Jacksonville, Florida. Her poetry and essays center on the themes of ecology, disability, feminism, and music. She is especially interested in challenging the divisions between human and nonhuman experiences—especially how a more-than-human world contributes to music and language. You can read her previous work in Wordgathering, Breath & Shadow, Artemis Journal, Disability Rhetoric, I Am Subject Stories: Women Awakening, and Bridge Eight, and you can read her essay in The Hopper, "Working Resonance: Concerto for Guide Dog, Handler, and World," here. Read about her manuscript here.