Alfred Poynt Award in Poetry

In the spirit of stimulating the imagination, promoting creativity, and fostering appreciation of English language skills and the art of poetry, the Department of English and Writing Studies is pleased to offer the annual Alfred Poynt Award in Poetry made in accordance with the wishes and through the generosity of the late Alfred R. Poynt of London, Ontario.

The winning entry will receive a prize of $350.

Warmest congratulations to Margaret Huntley (Faculty of Arts & Humanities) who has been awarded the 2022 Alfred Poynt Award in Poetry for their submission "Teal". The judges were impressed with the sustained quality of work across Margaret's submissions. With sophisticated use of irony that devastates the reader, this writer reflects on the collective struggle with systemic culture on campus that has impacted so many undergraduate students this year.

An Honourable Mention was also awarded to Katherine Barbour (Faculty of Arts & Humanities) for their submission, "Material Girl".

We wish them all the best with their writing in the future!

Thank you to Emily Lu, Misha Bower and David White who adjudicated the award this year.

Contest opens March 1, 2023.

  1. Poems must be submitted no later than midnight on Friday, March 31, 2023.
  2. Participants must be full-time students registered in any undergraduate (baccalaureate) program at Western University, including Affiliates.
  3. Previous first-prize winners are not eligible.
  4. The winner will be notified by email sometime in May.
  5. The results will be posted on the Department of English and Writing Studies website and social media channels.

 Submission and judging criteria

  1. Entries to be submitted by email in PDF format to:
  2. Poems must be in English and may use any style of poetry.
  3. Poems will be judged for their originality and for their use of form and technique, traditional or contemporary, in a skillful and creative way to create or intensify themes or effects.
  4. Total entry not to exceed 4 pages. Maximum 150 lines. Entries might be one longer poem or several shorter poems.
  5. Entries must be original, titled, previously unpublished, and not currently under evaluation for publication.
  6. Poems must be typed on 8.5 x 11 paper in 12-point type.
  7. Entries cannot be returned. Entrants retain their copyright.
  8. Submissions will be numbered and coded before the judging by a contest organizer who is not a judge. Do not include your name or student number on the poem page.
  9. Submission must include a separate cover page marked Alfred Poynt Award in Poetry with the following information:
    • your name
    • student number
    • email address
    • permanent mailing address
    • telephone number
    • title of poem(s)
    • contest name: Alfred Poynt Award in Poetry


Shelli Hunter |

2022 Judges
Adjudication will be done by a volunteer panel of published writers from London and/or the University community selected by the competition organizer. The decision of the judges will be final.

Emily Lu

Emily is a poet and resident physician, born in Nanjing. She is the author of Night Leaves Nothing New (Baseline Press 2019), shortlisted for the bpNichol chapbook award, as well as works appearing in Waxwing, X-R-A-Y, Honey Literary, Arc Poetry, filling Station, etc.

Misha Bower

Misha is a writer, musician and educational aide based in London, Ontario. She is the author of a short story collection called Music for Uninvited Guests and has contributed creative essays to publications like SappyForever, Women to the Front Zine and Canadian Music Magazine. Misha’s main musical work is a full-length album called Trying to Have it All, with songs from the album appearing in TV series Kim’s Convenience and feature film Body and Bones. Misha is a Creative Writing Specialist with The Write Place at King's, and as an educational aide with Fanshawe College, she provides one-on-one academic support to students with disabilities. Currently, Misha is working on a noir novel set in London.

David White

David White was a participant in Renga: A Collaborative Poem (Brick Books 1980). In 1994, in completion of his Ph.D., he wrote “A Territory Not Yet On The Map:” Relocating Gay Aestheticism in the Age of AIDS. His first solo collection of poems is The Lark Ascending (Pedlar Press, 2017), followed by Local Haunts (Pedlar Press 2019). For many years he taught Theatre History and Writing at Fanshawe College in London, Ontario.


Year First prize Title Honourable Mention Adjudicators
2021 Akshi Chadha "Diaspora Diorama" Ye Shen Michelle Arnett, Kevin Heslop, Michele (Nicole) Vanderwal
2020 Julia Rooth "Dysmorphic" Elizabeth Sak Jenny Berkel, Sydney Brooman, Tom Cull
2019 Noelle Schmidt "a demand that knows nothing" Camille Intson David Barrick, Sile Englert, Brittany Renaud
2018 Jonathan Pavey "Unbecoming" Camille Intson Emily Izsak, Kevin Shaw, and Blair Trewartha
2017 Marta Croll-Baehre "The Basin Woman" Hilary Doyle Matthew Godden, Angie Quick, Andy Verboom
2016 Emma Croll-Baehre "Whereabouts i, ii, iii" Marta Croll-Baehre Jason Dickson, Mike O'Connor, Peggy Roffey
2015 Sakariya Ahmed "Foreigner" Robyn Obermeyer Laurie D. Graham, Ola Nowosad, Ron Stewart
2014 Katherine O’Reilly "On the Night Before Your Father's Funeral" Robyn Obermeyer Adrienne Barrett, Frank Beltrano, Karen Schindler
2013 Kerrie McNair Alex Carey
2012 Laura Johnson Erin Lamotte
2011 Mark MacKichan John Vincent
2010 Millie Ho John Vincent
2009 Saiyid Hasan Malory Smith
2008 Amy Sanders Brooke Nolan
2007 Kevin Shaw Laura Krahn
2006 David Barrick Sara Clarke, Kevin Shaw
2005 Asher Ghaffar Jessica Balmer