42 Miles Press lives at Indiana University South Bend.


The 42 Miles Press Poetry Award was created in an effort to bring urgent and original voices to the poetry reading public. The prize is offered annually to any poet writing in English, including poets who have never published a full-length book as well as poets who have published several. New and Selected collections of poems are also welcome.

Manuscripts submitted for the 42 Miles Press Poetry Award should exhibit an awareness of the contemporary “voice” in American poetry, an awareness of our moment in time as poets. We are excited to receive poetry that is experimental as well as work of a more formalist bent, as long as it reflects a complexity and sophistication of thought and language. Urgency, yes; melodrama, not so much. Our tastes are truly eclectic. (Past winners include Betsy Andrews, Carrie Oeding, Allan Peterson, Erica Bernheim, Mary Ann Samyn, Bill Razmovicz, Tracey Knapp, William Stobb, Jake Bauer, Bryce Berkowitz, and others.

The winning poet will receive $1,000, publication of their book, and 50 author copies. The winner will also be invited to give a reading at Indiana University South Bend as part of the release of the book. The final selection will be made by the Series Editor. Current or former students or employees of Indiana University South Bend, as well as friends of the Series Editor, are not eligible for the prize.

Winners will be announced via our website in late fall of 2024. We will also announce the winner in major magazines such as Poets & Writers.

Manuscripts will be accepted from February 1st, 2024 to June 15, 2024.


  • There is a $25, non-refundable, entry fee.
  • Your cover sheet should include name, address, phone number, and e-mail.
  • The manuscript should be paginated (between 50 and 120 pp.) and include a table of contents and acknowledgments page.
  • There is no limit on the number of entries an author may submit.
  • Simultaneous submissions are fine (in fact they are encouraged), but please withdraw your manuscript if it gets taken for publication elsewhere.
  • No manuscripts will be returned. 

Buy three of our titles for $20. Free shipping. See full list of titles with descriptions here or below.

Please make your three selections from the provided list. Ordered books will ship in 2 to 3 business days. Your understanding is appreciated. 



You Are Still Alive

William Stobb

William Stobb’s work moves elegantly between restlessness and peace, an appreciation for the bizarreness of life and a desire for simplicity. In balancing these extremes, his poems create a feeling of movement toward reconciliation, if not its realization. To repurpose his own words, he builds a space in which the ’emotional life / inflected by the brightness of wit / puts its arm around the intellect.’ This book is a rare and beautiful accomplishment.”

—Bob Hicok


Air, Light, Dust, Shadow, Distance

Mary Ann Samyn

Mary Ann Samyn’s AIR, LIGHT, DUST, SHADOW, DISTANCE is a book of lyric meditation unlike any I know of. It’s as if Rilke took a vow to speak in end-stopped lines and let the mystery resonate in the pauses. Clipped, incisive, layered phrases surround heart-mysteries that resist direct articulation. The effect is haunted and haunting, as Dickinson said it should be.

—Gregory Orr



Kimberly Lambright

Artful and wry, smart and moving—Kimberly Lambright’s poems are made of such carefully rendered moments that the mundane becomes very wonderfully strange. ULTRA-CABIN is a book that will knock you out and invite you in, sometimes in the same brilliant breath.

—Kathryn Nuernberger



Tracey Knapp

Quotidian, weird, intimate, witty, and skittery, Knapp’s poems are refractions through a funhouse mirror. They’re self-conscious without being self-important. The wounded heart is everywhere apparent; we of that tribe can be grateful for one more of us to voice it, brilliantly. MOUTH is a charmer of a first book. Read it and weep over your nachos and wine; it will leave you wanting more.

—Kim Addonizio



Allan Peterson

Like a modern day Cezanne, Allan Peterson writes poems that slowly clarify via the subconscious, moving by increments into focus in the conscious mind. The attention to detail functions as a mosaic that coalesces into a whole by poem’s end, and we are but a fragment of the world depicted, and yet, like Peterson, we are also actively engaged in this splintering into wholeness.

—David Dodd Lee


The Bottom

Betsy Andrews

Hers is a water-poet’s inventory, cry and lamentation in one book-length tsunami of plangent musical phrases that might have frothed from the mouth of Whitman. From strength to strength she writes, pulling everything up into her net that need concern us now lest we harm the world beyond salvage. A stunning achievement destined to be among the great poems of our time.

—Carolyn Forché


The Mimic Sea

Erica Bernheim

THE MIMIC SEA is a whirling dervish of a book, its poems set spinning by the speaker's search for the perfect velocity, for a music rocket—fueled by the graffiti of this world in which only total coverage will suffice, a verbal opiate for the desiring consciousness. And Bernheim achieves this coverage, and more. A passion for knowing is transmuted by the blur of the universe (and all the stuff in it) made manifest in these poems, that "One Thing," the thread of existing, or co-existing, as continuous light, as consciousness ablaze with myriad forms that, by the time we finish this book, feel forged into a singular passion of being.


Gross Ardor

Bill Rasmovicz

"'Where have all the alchemists gone? We need them,' writes Bill Rasmovicz in 'The Mastery of Moving On.' Yet Bill Rasmovicz is himself an alchemist, turning the leaden stuff of urban life into the gold of consciousness. Ruthlessly quotidian but not taxed by the commonplace, GROSS ARDOR is a book of poems whose dry heat burns from every page."

—Natasha Sajé



You can reach us with any questions at 42milespress [at] gmail [dot] com

All previously published 42 Miles Press Award winners are available below.

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