Submissions Open for the 2016 Walrus Poetry Prize

>> From The Walrus

TORONTO, August 5, 2016—The Walrus Foundation is proud to announce the fifth annual Walrus Poetry Prize, judged by The Walrus poetry editor Damian Rogers and celebrated poet Hoa Nguyen. The Hal Jackman Foundation generously supports this $5,000 prize.

“I’m delighted to be working with the poet Hoa Nguyen this year on the 2016 Walrus Poetry Prize,” says Rogers, “and look forward to the moments of surprise and revelation that come from reading exciting new work.” Rogers will narrow the list of submissions, received between August 5 and September 12, to a short list of five poems, from which Nguyen will select the $4,000 winner. On October 3, the five finalists will be unveiled online at, where, until October 26, readers can vote for their favourite poem. The Readers’ Choice winner will receive $1,000.

The Walrus Poetry Prize–winning poem and the Readers’ Choice Award–winning poem will be announced on December 6. Both poems will appear in the January/February 2017 issue of The Walrus, at, and in the anthology for Poetry in Voice, a nationwide poetry-recitation contest for high school students. Visit for submission guidelines.

The Walrus Foundation and poetry editor Damian Rogers are dedicated to finding and publishing the best of Canadian poetry. Sara Peters won the 2015 Walrus Poetry Prize for her poem “Mercury.” Past winners of the Walrus Poetry Prize have ranged from previously unpublished poets like Bardia Sinaee (Readers’ Choice, 2012) to known Canadian talents like Kateri Lanthier (Walrus Poetry Prize, 2013) to up-and-comers like Michael Prior (Walrus Poetry Prize and Readers’ Choice, 2014).

The Hal Jackman Foundation, committed to fostering creativity and enriching communities through the arts, has generously supported the prize since its 2012 inauguration. “The Hal Jackman Foundation is proud to continue our support of the Walrus Foundation’s poetry program and the fifth annual Walrus Poetry Prize,” says executive director Victoria Jackman. “We are delighted that the Walrus remains committed to the development of compelling Canadian poetry.  The Walrus’ work in providing a platform and building new audiences for poetry in Canada is invaluable.” The foundation also supports the publication of poetry in every issue of The Walrus.
Readers and poets can participate every step of the way at

Submissions open
: August 5 – September 12
Shortlist announced: October 3
Vote for the Readers’ Choice Award
: October 3 – October 26
Winners announced: December 6


The Hal Jackman Foundation believes cultural activities are essential tools in fostering vibrant, livable communities. It is committed to developing and presenting compelling artistic programs in the visual and performing arts. It focuses on increasing access to and appreciation of arts and culture as well as building the audiences of the future. In the last twenty-five years, the Hal Jackman Foundation has awarded more than $20 million to over 200 arts and educational institutions, underlining its civic commitment to Toronto.

The Walrus Foundation is a registered charitable non-profit (No. 861851624-RR0001) with an educational mandate to create forums for matters vital to Canadians. The foundation is dedicated to supporting writers, artists, ideas, and thought-provoking conversation. We achieve these goals across multiple platforms: publishing The Walrus magazine—which focuses on Canada and its place in the world—ten times a year in print, tablet, and mobile editions; curating and producing the national series of public Walrus Talks; convening annual sector-based leadership dinners; posting original, high-quality content daily at; and designing such digital projects as Walrus Ebooks and Walrus TV. The foundation also trains young professionals in media, publishing, and non-profit development.

Poetry in Voice is a national poetry-recitation contest for high school students in Canada. Students memorize and recite poems chosen from among the hundreds in the online anthology, developing lifelong relationships with poetry while improving their language, public speaking, and memorization skills. Top-scoring students, selected from across the country, win a trip with their teachers to the national finals each spring.

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