2019 Contest Winner


Karina Borowicz

In this collection, noted poet Karina Borowicz creates a world within a world. The poems range over many aspects of life, yet are connected by a sense of coherence, continuity, and deeper meaning. The sea in the immensity of its power is a recurring theme. The seasons come and go, but human relationships and a sense of nostalgia and wonder remain. To read this book is a rich and moving experience.

From Rosetta


A hawk has come
suddenly among us. We are in our cars,
we are listening to the news.

The traffic does not slow
for a bird perched on an overhead wire.
But something slows,

seeking balance under the shifting weight
as if another lead disc has been added to the stack.


“Karina Borowicz casts her gaze on overlooked figures and landscapes close at hand–an elderly neighbor, a decaying garden, a crumbling house–then extends it to the cosmos, seeking human resonances in the most forbidding places.”

Joshua Coben

Author of Night Chaser

About the Author

Karina Borowicz

Karina Borowicz is the author of Rosetta (Ex Ophidia, 2021), Proof (Codhill Press, 2014), and The Bees Are Waiting (Marick Press, 2012), which won the Eric Hoffer Award and was named a Must-Read by the Massachusetts Center for the Book. A French bilingual volume of new and selected works, Tomates de septembre, was published by Cheyne-éditeur in 2020. Her work has appeared widely in journals, anthologies, and other media, including Ted Kooser’s American Life in Poetry and NPR’s Writer’s Almanac and The Slowdown. She makes her home in the Connecticut River Valley of western Massachusetts. For more information, and to read poems, interviews, reviews, and essays on craft, visit www.karinaborowicz.com.