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Poetry power

Annual prizes awarded to writer and musician Heather Nolan

Student Life

By Janet Harron

A local writer and musician has received the Gregory J. Power Award for her poem, The Poet’s Return from a Deep Time Encounter.

The Gregory J. Power Poetry Awards were handed out on April 3.
Photo: Submitted

Heather Nolan’s debut novella, This is Agatha Falling, was published by Pedlar Press in 2019 and she is the songwriter and guitarist for the band Lady Brett Ashley.

Ms. Nolan was presented with a cheque for $300 by Gregory J. Power Jr., at a ceremony on Thursday, April 3.

Dr. Jennifer Lokash, head of the Department of English, and Mary Dalton, professor and poet, judged the contest.

“This poem is highly accomplished, well researched and rich in striking geological imagery that situates the everyday, or the here and now, a life of tea cups and swimming and seasonal change, amid the sublime movements of continents, the appearance and disappearance of oceans and the slow glide of the glaciers,” said Dr. Lokash, who also hosted the ceremony.

Multiple awards

Jim McEwan took second place, valued at $200 for Janitor. He is a master’s student in Memorial’s English department, currently working on a creative thesis.

Sarah Harris’s poem Meeting for Brunch took third place. Ms. Harris is a fourth-year folklore student and musician, with a keen interest in all things Newfoundland and Labrador.

Ms. Harris was also awarded the Jeroboam Poetry Prize for The Cottage. The award was established by the founding members of Jeroboam, a student publishing house, to honour a poem with a subject unique to Newfoundland and Labrador.

Gregory J. Power was born in Dunville, N.L., in 1909 and first achieved recognition as an athlete. In 1930 he represented Newfoundland at the first British Empire Games. He was a member of the House of Assembly for Placentia-St. Mary’s from 1951-59, serving as both minister of Finance and minister of Highways in those years.

The Gregory J. Power Poetry Awards recognizes Mr. Power’s literary gifts; he twice won the O’Leary Newfoundland Poetry Awards and published two important books: Gems of Newfoundland Poetry (1967) and The Power of the Pen (1989).


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