The Hopper Poetry Prize


We are pleased to announce that Brigit Truex is runner-up of The Hopper Poetry Prize for her manuscript The History of Water.

The genesis of this work, The History of Water, came as an unbidden thought as I wandered through that hidden gem of solitude and peace, the Land of the Medicine Buddha, located in the Santa Cruz mountains of California. Both title and focus of the work, it was intriguing to see how that phrase expanded, as a literal ripple might. The ways of looking at this ubiquitous element are vast. It accounts for some sixty percent of our bodies, seventy-two percent of our earth. It is vital to existence and at the same time, the potential cause of its extinction. It can be bridge or barrier. Cursed and blessed. Its very source here is a matter of conjecture still. And its future? One of our most significant concerns. Wars are already being waged over it,  even as many blithely choose to ignore the warnings. Still, in these poems, this personal exploration, I hope the reader considers this precious gift we sometimes squander.   

—Brigit Truex

From the South Shore of Massachusetts to Santa Monica, from the incredible blue of California’s Lake Tahoe to the Bluegrass plateau of Kentucky, Brigit Truex has lived in a wide variety of locales. Subtle background or dominant theme, these geographies have influenced and inspired her writing. With these diverse sites, she has explored the intimate of self as well as the broader scope of society and the roles we play. With her diverse heritage of First Nations (Abenaki/Cree), French Canadian, and Irish, she has been gifted a complex view of her world, one that acknowledges the spiritual inherent in nature and thus, our responsibilities. These aspects are reflected in the array of national and international journals and anthologies where her work has appeared. In addition to four chapbooks, she has a full-length book, Strong As Silk (Lummox Press). Other publications include I Was Indian, Atlanta Review, Canary, Yellow Medicine Review, Poetry Now, and Tule Review. Enjoy her poem "Traces," from The History of Water, below.


water keeps its secret
scent cupped in a discrete
eddy    a halocline of smell
pooled in stillness    greedy of
what stepped here
swam here
what died
loosing each tang
from the white net
of sinew          translucent bone

            only to slip away
            as it does     heeding
            the irresistible Loreli-
            lure of somewhere else

carrying soluble turquoise
from glaciers     perhaps gold
arterial & splendid in its
blanched muscle of quartz
impermeable         angular

            this water

elides with itself downstream
full of root-seep & leaf-tea               
milt-spill of salmon
ribboned in brine
shouldering aside
a latent sun

Blue #2  by Georgia O'Keeffe | Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Blue #2 by Georgia O'Keeffe | Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons