Meet The Judges

The submission period for 2019 is now closed. The deadline was August 31, 2019. Come back — we’ll do it again next year!

We’re thrilled to announce the judges for the 2019 Jack Grapes Poetry Prize.


Tanya (Hyonhye) Ko Hong is a poet, translator, and cultural-curator. Born and raised in Suk Su Dong, South Korea, Tanya immigrated to the US at eighteen. She holds an MFA from Antioch University in Los Angeles, CA. Tanya is the author of Mother to Myself: A collection of poems in Korean (Prunsasang Press, 2015) Yellow Flowers on a Rainy Day (Oma Books, 2003), Mother’s Diary of Generation (Qumran, 2002), and Generation One Point Five (Esprit 1993). Tanya’s work appears in Rattle, Beloit Poetry Journal, Entropy, Cultural Weekly, The Feminist Press, Lunch Ticket, great weather for Media, Califragile, Choson Iibo, Korea Times, Korea Central Daily News, the Aeolian Harp Series Anthology and more. She received an honorable mention in 2015 from the Women’s National Book Association. In 2018, Tanya won the Yun Doon-ju Korean-American Literature Award, was a finalist in Frontier’s Chapbook Contest, and was Pushcart nominee. In 2015 and 2018, Tanya translated to Arthur Sze’s poems, becoming the first person to translate and publish his poems into Korean. She champions bilingual poetry and poets. Tanya lives Palos Verdes with her husband and three children. Tanya is a Ph.D. candidate in Mythologycal Studies at Pacifica Graduate Institute.


Eric Morago is a Pushcart Prize nominated poet who believes performance carries as much importance on the page as it does off. He is the author of What We Ache For (Moon Tide Press, 2010) and Feasting on Sky (Paper Plane Pilots, 2016), and has released the spoken word album I Don’t Like Straws under Melody Maker Productions’ recording label. Currently Eric hosts a monthly reading series, teaches writing workshops, and is an associate editor for FreezeRay Poetry, a quarterly literary journal dedicated to the poetry of pop culture. In 2017, Eric took over as editor-in-chief and publisher of Moon Tide Press. Under his direction, the press strives to focus on publishing new, diverse, and/or daring voices, searching for well-crafted poetry that is smart, imaginative, honest, and engaging—poetry that invites its audience to come back for seconds and thirds. Eric has an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from California State University, Long Beach, and lives in Los Angeles, CA.


Poet and photographer Alexis Rhone Fancher has work published in over 200 literary magazines, journals, and anthologies, including Best American Poetry, Rattle, Hobart, Verse Daily, The MacGuffin, Plume, Tinderbox, Diode, Nashville Review, Rust + Moth, Nasty Women Poets, Wide Awake: Poets of Los Angeles and Beyond, among others. Her photographs have been published worldwide. Her books include: How I Lost My Virginity to Michael Cohen & other heart stab poems, Enter Here, and her scathing, autobiographical chapbook, Junkie Wife. State of Grace: The Joshua Elegies was released in 2015, and its companion volume, The Dead Kid Poems, published in May, 2019. EROTIC, a volume of her new and selected erotica, will be published in 2020 by New York Quarterly. A nominee of multiple Pushcart Prize, Best Small Fictions, Best Micro-fiction, and Best of the Net awards, Alexis has been poetry editor of Cultural Weekly since November of 2012. 


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