Sylvia Plath at Smith


2009 winners


2009 Winners

Judge, Winner & Finalists





Taylor Clarke (Phillips Academy), for her poem "Charlotte Mason"


Gabriella Fee (Walnut Hill High School), for "Nobska"

Stephanie Saywell (Lawrence Academy), for "Candlewick"

Bryna Cofrin-Shaw (Stonleigh Burnham), for "Things Change Size"

Judge for 2009: Paul Muldoon

Read the Winning Poems here!


The award carried with it a prize of $500 for the first-place winner, and the winners read their poems on stage at Mr. Muldoon's spring poetry reading. Before the reading, the winner and runners-up are also invited to meet privately with Mr. Muldoon, and to spend an afternoon at Smith, visiting the Poetry Center and meeting with President Christ.

The Smith College Poetry Prize for High School Girls is a statewide contest open to sophomore and junior girls. Submissions were received from all parts of the state, and from public, private and home-schooled students. Mr. Muldoon chose the winning poems from among twenty finalists, selected anonymously by a committee of students and faculty.

Paul Muldoon

Paul Muldoon



about the judge
Playwright, essayist, editor, translator, librettist, children’s book author, teacher, musician, and, foremost, poet, Paul Muldoon has won many distinguished awards, including the Pulitzer Prize. Born and raised in County Armagh, Northern Ireland, in a house without books, he has lived in the U.S. for over twenty years. Generally regarded as the leading Irish poet of his generation, Muldoon’s sidelong wit, formal ingenuity, and linguistic exuberance are legendary. He is poetry editor for The New Yorker and teaches at Princeton University.













From Sylvia Plath's journal, Smith College, April 27, 1953