Annual HPU Poetry Award Winner Announced

Ness Morrison is the winner of this year’s James Vaughan Award for Poetry. They are an Oceanography major and a writing minor who won with their poem titled, “Yearly Remains.”   

The judge of this award is Patrice M. Wilson, Ph.D., a retired Associate Professor of English at HPU and former editor of Hawai‘i Pacific Review. She is an accomplished poet with three short books and one full-length book, has many publications in literary magazines, and has done several readings in Hawai‘i and on the mainland.  

Wilson said of the winning poem, "This poem is outstanding among the entries for its polished use of voice, the clarity of the speaker, the timely way it juxtaposed the speaker's experience with a tone of compassion for others. The poem's diction, development, and skillfully wrought form demonstrate the poet's well-developed sense of poetic convention while remaining original in title and content through use of figures of speech. Well done!"   

The James Vaughan Award for Poetry is supported by HPU alumnus James Vaughan, who established a fund to enhance the literature and poetry programs at the university. The 2020 award is an HPU scholarship of $950, and the yearly award is open to currently enrolled HPU undergraduate students.