2017 Dwarf Stars Award Winners

On behalf of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association, we’re honored and delighted to announce the 2017 Dwarf Stars Awards. Our thanks to this year’s chair, Robin Mayhall, who chaired the process and gave us so many fine works to consider. Our members voted, and here are the results:

First Place: “aster than the speed of lightf” by LeRoy Gorman

Second Place: 
“Lover” by Holly Day

Third Place: 
“Loss” by Sandi Leibowitz


Our chair Robin Mayhall said “Congratulations to each of these winners. Your work is extraordinary—truly the best of the best short poems published in 2016!

Many thanks to those who nominated poems and to all of the members who voted. If you haven’t yet read through your copy of the 2017 Dwarf Stars Anthology, please pick it up and read these wonderful works, as well as the many other surreal, funny, sad, spooky and beautiful poems therein.”

For those who want a list of the 2017 candidates, please click here. This award is given by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association to recognize the best speculative poem of 1–10 lines published in the previous year.

Although hundreds of excellent very short science fiction, fantasy, and horror poems are regularly published each year, they seem to be mostly overlooked in the Rhysling Award process. In the history of the Rhysling Award, few poems of 10 lines or fewer (stanza breaks excluded from line count) have been nominated, and none has won. Yet, there is an enduring interest in short forms. It is not uncommon to find excellent scifaiku, tanka, cinquains, and other speculative short poems in poetry journals. The Dwarf Stars Award acknowledges excellence in this specialized field.
Dwarf Stars 12
Unlike the annual Rhysling Anthology, Dwarf Stars is an edited anthology. Poets are encouraged to submit poems published in the previous year for consideration. Poets, poetry readers, and editors are also encouraged to send suggestions of eligible poems to the current Dwarf Stars editor. Deborah P Kolodji was named the first Dwarf Stars editor by former SFPA president Mike Allen.
The annual Dwarf Stars anthology is published as a chapbook. SFPA members vote on their favorite short-short poem from the anthology, and the winner is given the Dwarf Stars Award. A copy of the Dwarf Stars anthology is included with SFPA membership.
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association was established in 1978 by Suzette Haden-Elgin and has an international membership representing over 19 nations and cultures including United States, Italy, Canada, Brazil, United Kingdom, Ireland, Romania, Poland, Denmark, Germany, France, Spain, Israel, South Africa, Singapore, Thailand, Laos, the Hmong, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand.
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association publishes two journals: Star*Line and Eye to the Telescope. It oversees three major literary awards for poetry: The Rhyslings, the Dwarf Stars, and the Elgin Awards. They also conduct an annual science fiction poetry contest and other special events and gatherings. Further, the SFPA also provide resources for emerging and established poets seeking professional publication and networking opportunities.

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