The Vallum Award for Poetry 2013 Winners


Biographical Note:

Michael Prior lives in Toronto where he is a student in the University of Toronto’s MA in Creative Writing Program. His poems have appeared, or are forthcoming, in The Antigonish Review, Branch Magazine, Carousel, CV2, Grain, and Qwerty. He was long-listed for the 2013 CBC Poetry Prize. 




1st Prize

Michael Prior


Godzilla Versus Mothra

This undulating sea, like a tongue caught
tripping towards a Freudian lip, or a hand
surprised to feel Adam's ratcheted fruit.

The T.V. recommends we batten down
our eyelashes, draw battle lines
in the foam. Somewhere someone just

changed the channel, the sky pregnant
with thick tumblers, thin-stemmed glasses—
all the hardware I should have hidden.

Who forgot the first slog of Pacific freeze,
original sin singled out, brought
home: a stubborn violet in a pot?

Drawn to the newly fluorescent light,
a single scrap of paper burns like
an adamantine star. Your grin

is the forgiveness by which we measure
the hour. You simmer as I pour the tea
into jars, offer you the first sip.



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