2012 Contest Winner Announcement

TIR staff

The winner of The Iowa Review's 2012 Jeff Sharlet Memorial Prize for Veterans is Iraq War veteran Hugh Martin. An Ohio-born poet, Martin is currently a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. Martin’s work was selected from 265 contest entries in all genres.

Judge Robert Olen Butler noted that he was “keenly moved by the depth of feeling and high quality of writing by these veterans. Hugh Martin's poetry represents this body of work at its finest, evoking wartime's moment-to-moment experience with brilliantly observed clarity while illuminating its manifestation of our shared human condition with wisdom and compassion. The best of what I read was not, in its essence, the work of veterans; it was the work of artists."

Hugh Martin’s first book, The Stick Soldiers, recently won the A. Poulin Jr. First Book Prize from BOA Editions, and recent poems by him have appeared in The American Poetry Review, Crazyhorse, and The Kenyon Review.

Martin will receive a $1,000 prize, and his poems will be published in The Iowa Review’s spring issue of 2013.

Read an interview with Hugh Martin by PBS Newshour

Many thanks to all who entered the contest!