T H E   B E S T   N E W   W O M E N   P O E T S


  by Megan Peak

Winner of the 2018 Perugia Press Prize
for a first or second book of poetry by a woman

"In one poem, Peak writes, 'your mouth was full of fields / with horses, all unbound—all crying / their long red sounds,' and in another, '. . .but the light bulb, / which is my tongue, glows—.' How perfectly these lines capture the experience of reading Peak’s extraordinary poems. Girldom is a powerful debut by a poet who has the sensual, grieving world in her mouth."  

—Allison Benis White,
author of Please Bury Me in This
"In her bold debut collectionMegan Peak writes, 'I was a girl before I was anything else.' The girls in Girldom—the one 'who burns / through dirt like a steel hoof,' the one 'who shears / her long braid to fatten the fire'—hack their way through the nettles and thorns of sexual awakening and sexual trauma. Claiming one’s body—one’s self—is vulnerable, brave, and important. So are these poems."
—Maggie Smith,
author of Good Bones


Cover art
by Corrie Peak

MEGAN PEAK’S DEBUT COLLECTION GIRLDOM chronicles coming of age as a woman: the violence of discovery, the evolution of sexuality, and the demanding yet necessary acts of self-preservation and resistance. Amid landscapes of wasps and nettle, cold moons and icy rivers, daughters navigate trauma and desire, sisters bear witness to each other’s trajectories, and girls experience worlds of both rage and tenderness. There is an impounded beauty in Girldom, the beauty of a healing wound. Compressed yet explosive, these poems shake like fists and vibrate with the seeking of voice. “I was a girl before I was anything else,” the poet writes. In the midst of the #MeToo movement, Peak’s book is timely and timeless in its confrontation of the constraints and concerns bound up in being a girl.

Megan Peak received her MFA in Poetry from The Ohio State University, where she was Poetry Editor at The Journal. Her poems have appeared in Blackbird, Indiana Review, Ninth Letter, Pleiades, Ploughshares, and Verse Daily, among others. She lives in Fort Worth, Texas with her partner and son. Read more about Megan and her poetry at www.meganpeak.com.



2019 Perugia Press Prize
for a First or Second Book by a Woman

Prize: $1000 and publication
Submit manuscripts between August 1 and November 15, 2018


PO Box 60364, Florence, MA  01062