April 8, 2002
Literature major wins top honors in statewide poetry contests
By Ann M. Gibb
Kristen Holden, a junior majoring in literature, has earned top honors in two
statewide poetry competitions. "I'm elated," said Holden. "Of course
it's what I wanted, but I wasn't expecting it to happen."
Both of Holden's prize-winning works are expansive love poems. "Ten Love Poems
Aching from Three Days" won first place in the Ina Coolbrith Memorial Poetry
Competition, and "The Squaring of a Conversation between Loves" earned
second place in the Poet Laureate Contest.
|Kristen Holden with Charles Atkinson, an instructor in the Literature Department.
Photo: Angelica Farber
Holden's accomplishment continues a tradition of prize-winning poets at UCSC. Since
1997, UCSC students have earned six awards in the Poet Laureate and the Coolbrith
Memorial competitions, including three first prizes.
"Kristen's poems are meditative and lyrical at the same time," said Charles
Atkinson, an instructor in the Literature Department. "Her winning poems are
startling, demanding and delicious all at once--quite a ride, from a gifted poet."
Holden was recently accepted into the creative writing concentration in the UC Santa
Cruz Literature Department.
The two poetry competitions were established in honor of Ina Coolbrith, who was appointed
California's first poet laureate in 1915. They are both open to students from all
campuses of the University of California, and the Coolbrith Memorial is also open
to students at five additional California universities.
Holden will receive a total cash prize of $325 with her awards.
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