Mira Blankenship wins Balocating Undergraduate Prize for Poetry

April 8, 2021

Congratulations to Mira Blankenship (RCAH '21), whose poem "We're so glad you're here, Angelica." was selected by final judge Marilyn Nelson as the winner of the 2021 Balocating Undergraduate Prize for Poetry.

"This list-poem," writes Nelson about the selection, "escalates its naming of 'Angelica' in lines which expand into sort of a concrete poem with a right margin shaped like a wave -- of insult? of admiration? of serious description? of humor? It's hard to tell. But what stays in the mind is that this 'Angelica' is a historian, a rememberer, and a disrupter. I'm only sorry the last line of the poem isn't 'You poet.'"

Blankenship was awarded $500 and read their winning poem at Marilyn Nelson's reading on April 7, 2021.

The Balocating Prize was established in 2011 by Annie Balocating (1979-2018), an MSU/Residential Option in Arts and Letters (ROIAL) alumna. In her time in ROIAL, she was an avid poet and active in community efforts to assist refugees of Sudan. Read more about her remarkable life here.

Read the full poem and find links to the event recording here.