Jack Grapes Poetry Prize

Jack Grapes Poetry Prize: The Judges

The Jack Grapes Poetry Prize is back. We are looking forward to your beautiful, incredible, powerful submissions.

Get to know the three esteemed judges for this year’s contest.


Sean Thomas Dougherty

Sean Thomas Dougherty, one of this year's judges for Jack Grapes Poetry Prize

Sean Thomas Dougherty is the author or editor of twenty books including his latest Death Prefers the Minor Keys from BOA Editions. His numerous awards also include The Paterson Poetry Prize, The James Hearst Poetry Prize from North American Review, an Established Artist Fellowship for Northwest Pennsylvania, two Pennsylvania Council for the Arts Fellowships in Poetry, and a United States Fulbright Lectureship to the Balkans. Sean currently works as a writing mentor with the MFA program in creative writing at Western Connecticut State University, and as a Medical Technician and long-term caregiver for folks with traumatic brain injuries. He was the seventh official poet laureate of Erie County, Pennsylvania. seanthomasdoughertypoet.com


Monica Sok

Monica Sok, one of this year's judges for Jack Grapes Poetry Prize

Monica Sok is the author of A Nail the Evening Hangs On (Copper Canyon Press, 2020). Her work has been recognized with a “Discovery” Prize from 92Y. She has received fellowships from the Hedgebrook, Kundiman, MacDowell, National Endowment  for the Arts, Poetry Society of America, the Wallace Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University, and others. Her poems appear or are forthcoming in American Poetry Review, Paris Review, POETRY, Kenyon Review, and New Republic. She has taught at Stanford University and the Center for Empowering Refugees and Immigrants. monicasok.com


Alan Catlin

Alan Catlin, one of this year's judges for Jack Grapes Poetry Prize

Alan Catlin has been publishing poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and the odd collage or two for the better part of six decades.  He has dozens of chapbooks and full-length books on a wide variety of subjects ranging in art (Impressionists, Effects of Sunlight in Fog from Bright Hill Press; Deep Water Horizon, environmental disaster seen in terms of various artists ranging from Duchamp, to Turner to Francis Bacon), politics and art (Asylum Garden after Van Gogh from Dos Madres, American Odyssey and Wild Beauty, from Future Cycle Press), to an eleven chapbook series of Noir film mostly published in three full-length books under the working title Hollyweird. His book Self-Portrait of the Artist Afraid if His Self-Portrait (March Street Press) is probably not autobiographical and is unclassifiable. He has won several chapbook awards including, most recently, the Slipstream Chapbook Award, for Blue Velvet (second chapbook in the noir series). He has been a finalist in several national book contests including one sponsored by Pleaides and another by the Wisconsin Review. He has been nominated for 30 or so Pushcarts, Rhyslings, Bram Stoker, Best of Net, and other stuff. It’s not about the awards, it’s about the poems.

What are you looking for?