Announcing the Results of the 2020 Sunken Garden Chapbook Award

Tupelo Press is especially delighted to announce that our judge, Cornelius Eady, has selected Salat by Dujie Tahat of Seattle, Washington as winner of the 2020 Sunken Garden Chapbook Poetry Award.  

Dujie Tahat is a Filipino-Jordanian immigrant living in Washington State. The author of Here I Am O My God, selected by Fady Joudah for a Poetry Society of America Chapbook Fellowship, their poems have been published or are forthcoming in POETRYSugar House ReviewThe Journal, ZYZZVA, The Southeast ReviewSouthern Indiana ReviewAsian American Literary Review, and elsewhere. Dujie Tahat has earned fellowships from Hugo House, Jack Straw, and the Poetry Foundation, and a scholarship from Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. They serve as a poetry editor for Moss and Homology Lit and co-host The Poet Salon podcast. He got his start as a Seattle Poetry Slam Finalist, a collegiate grand slam champion, and Seattle Youth Speaks Grand Slam Champion, representing Seattle at HBO’s Brave New Voices. Dujie Tahat is an MFA candidate in the Warren Wilson Program for Writers.

Photo by Sonja Lyon

About Salat Cornelius Eady writes: “There are metaphors and then there are metaphors.” Salat bestrides the space between poem and prayer, between the ideal of this country and what is truly measured out daily. I would call it a survival guide in verse, except these poems contain the same energy and power as the tree that splits the rock.”

Our sincere congratulations to Dujie Tahat, whose book will be out in time for his debut reading this summer at the Sunken Garden Poetry Festival on opening night, Wednesday, June 17th, along with US Poet Laureate Joy Harjo.


Danielle Blau of Ridgewood, New York for Peep

Eric Burger of Longmont, Colorado for Sizzle 

Jody Chan of Toronto, Canada for all the futures we deserve 

Asa Drake of Ocala Florida for Tonight, A Woman 

C. X. Hua of Cambridge, Massachusetts for Other People 

K.B. Kinkel of Cambridge, Massachusetts for Blood Machine 

Matt McBride of Chambersberg, Pennsylvania for The Mourners Forget Which Funeral They’re At 

Rachel Mennies of Chicago, Illinois for The Teenage Girl Understands 

Heather Sellers of St. Petersberg, Florida for The Present State of the Garden 

Julia Thacker of Arlington, Massachusetts for The Winter Comb


Jill Allen of Fort Myers, Florida for Wish Cartography   

Jose Filipe Alvergue of Eau Claire, Wisconsin for Asylum 

Dante Di Stefano of Owego, New York for Little Low Heavens

Terese Dzieglewicz of New York, New York for Something Small of How to See a River 

Kerry James Evans of Auburn, Alabama & Travis Mossotti of St. Louis, Missouri for Crane

Vedran Husic of Columbia, Missouri for Revisitation 

Elizabeth Robinson of Oakland, California for Wanderers

Jaya Stenquist of Minneapolis, Minnesota for What Animals Did at Night 

Emily Stokes of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for Joystorm 

T.C. Tolbert of Tucson, Arizona for The Quiet Practices 

Feral Wilcox of Pasadena, California for Glossary of Snow 

Congratulations as well to this year’s superb cast of finalists and semifinalists. Enormous thanks as well to our terrific readers and judge, the estimable Cornelius Eady. Finally, and perhaps most important, our special gratitude goes out to all who sent us your chapbooks and who, by your writing, link arms in the tireless, solitary, and so-important work of making poetry. So many more manuscripts than we can mention here gave us (literally) countless hours of reading pleasure. Finally, we hope you will consider letting us see your chapbook manuscript again, as our annual Snowbound Chapbook Award is on now. We’d also love to see your full-length manuscript, as the annual Berkshire Prize for a First or Second Book of Poetry is also open for submissions.