LUMINA XVII is pleased to announce the

Winners of the 2017 Poetry Contest

First Place: "Cerulean" by Stephanie Johnson
Second Place: "Above the North Candian River (after Terrance Hayes's A Postcard from Okemah)" by Derick Ebert
Third Place: "I Should Be a Woman to You" by Arriel Vinson






Stephanie Renae Johnson is a Pushcart Prize nominated author and a finalist for the 2016 Claire Keyes poetry award. She is also the Editor-in-Chief of The Passed Note. Her work has been published by Banshee and Penny, among others. She lives in Asheville, North Carolina with her husband and their seven bookshelves.




Derick Ebert is a first-year student in the MFA Writing Program studying poetry at Sarah Lawrence College. In 2015, Derick became Baltimore's first ever Youth Poet Laureate. As the 2015 Youth Poet Laureate, Derick was charged with promoting a citywide appreciation for literacy and art, as well as inspiring young people to become more engaged in their community. Derick is the author of Black Boy Archaeologist, a poetry book that explores the boundaries of bi-racial identity, self-awareness, and young heartache. He has had his poems published in American Short Fiction, New Plains Review and by the Poetry Society of America. Derick will be delivering a TEDxTalk at the University of Baltimore in November.





Arriel Vinson is an Indiana native earning her MFA in Fiction at Sarah Lawrence College. She received a B.A. in Journalism from Indiana University, and has had essays/articles published in Blavity, The LaLa, The Indianapolis Recorder, INside Magazine and more.


Past Contest Winners

LUMINA    Nonfiction Contest Winners (clockwise from left):   E.G. Cunningham, Nadia Owusu, and Alysia Sawchyn.

LUMINA Nonfiction Contest Winners (clockwise from left): E.G. Cunningham, Nadia Owusu, and Alysia Sawchyn.

LUMINA is pleased to announce the winners of the 2017 LUMINA Nonfiction Contest, judged by Leslie Jamison. LUMINA’s annual literary contest is open to all writers, and rotates each year between nonfiction, fiction, and poetry. Recent contest judges include Roxane Gay, Cheryl Strayed, Patricia Lockwood, and Vivian Gornick. For the first time this year, the contest echoes our print journal’s theme: Borders & Boundaries.

Our staff and readers read 198 submissions and selected six finalists. These finalists were reviewed blind by our judge, Leslie Jamison, who chose the three winners. With much gratitude to all the writers who submitted work, we are pleased to announce and congratulate the following contest winners and finalists:

First Place: “The Exedra” by E.G. Cunningham
Second Place: “Aftershocks” by Nadia Owusu
Third Place: “Rice Grain Girl” by Alysia Sawchyn

“Up A Steep and Very Narrow Stairway” by Emma Bolden
“Imiryango” by Gabrielle Spear
“The Language  of What Can and Cannot Be Measured” by Kristina Moriconi