Jamie Samdahl ’15, following the footsteps of past winners Sylvia Plath ’55, James Merrill and Robert Lowell, was named this week as the winner of the 90th Annual Glascock Intercollegiate Poetry Competition, the oldest and most prestigious prize for college poets. Samdahl, an American studies major with a Poetry Concentration, was the youngest poet in the competition.
The Glascock Competition, hosted by Mount Holyoke College, is named after Mount Holyoke alumna Kathryn Irene Glascock ’22. The competition invited six college poets to recite several of their works on April 19. Other contestants, all seniors, were from Skidmore, Fordham, Mount Holyoke, SUNY-Buffalo and Harvard. Contest judges were Cleopatra Mathis, of Dartmouth; Mary Jo Salter, Johns Hopkins; and John Yau, Rutgers.
“I am honored and proud,” said Samdahl about winning the prestigious competition. “The best part of winning the Glascock Prize has been realizing how blessed I am to have such unconditionally loving family and friends. I am absolutely struck by the extent to which they come to support me.”
One of Samdahl’s poems, June, displayed below, was composed for a painting in the Smith College Museum of Art.
after Rouault’s Christ of the Incas
Your father was taking his time
We waited him out
from the waist up,
swimming in a thick of lily root.
We were lost to each other
never daring to admit
the thing Christ had right
was loving wildly.