Congratulations to Layla Benitez-James, winner of the 2017 Toi Derricotte & Cornelius Eady Chapbook Prize for God Suspected My Heart Was a Geode But He Had to Make Sure, selected by Major Jackson.
Layla will receive $500, publication by Jai-Alai Books in spring 2018, a week-long residency at The Writers Room at The Betsy Hotel and 10 complimentary copies of the chapbook. She will give a feature reading at the 2018 O, Miami Poetry Festival. The Prize is a signature program of Cave Canem Foundation.
Layla Benitez-James (Austin, 1989) is a poet, translator, and artist living in Alicante, Spain. Her writing has appeared in The San Antonio Express-News, Acentos Review, Matter, Guernica, and Autostraddle, among other places. Translations can be found in Waxwing and Anomaly. Poems translated into Spanish are published in Revista Kokoro, La Caja de Resistencia and La Galla Ciencia Numero IV with bilingual presentations in Spain including El Tren de los Poetas in Cuenca, Los Lunes Literarios, La Galla Ciencia, Café Zalacaín in Murcia, and La poesía es noticia: Moth & Rust / Óxido y polilla, una sesión de poemas en inglés y español in Alicante. Audio essays about translation can be found at Asymptote Journal Podcast. She currently works with the Unamuno Author Series in Madrid as their Director of Literary Outreach.
Honorable Mentions: Casey Rocheteau for Gorgoneion and Lynne Thompson for A Construction of Bindings.