The J.M. Abraham

Atlantic Poetry Award

The J.M. Abraham Atlantic Poetry Award was created by the writing community in the late 1990s. The Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia, with the assistance of several poets, publishers, and post-secondary institutions, raised funds for an annual award program designed to honour the best book of poetry by an Atlantic Canadian. In 2014, the Award was named for the legacy of J.M. Abraham.


  •  Joe Bishop, Indie Rock, University of Alberta Press

  • Matthew Hollett, Optic Nerve, Brick Books

  • Sadie McCarney, Your Therapist Says It’s Magical Thinking, ECW Press

  • Fawn Parker, Soft Inheritance, Palimpsest Press

  • Harry Thurston, Ultramarine, Gaspereau Press


Submissions and Guidelines

The J.M. Abraham Atlantic Poetry Award ($2,000 prize) is awarded for a book of poetry written or co-written by a full-time resident of Atlantic Canada* that was published and/or distributed for the first time in Canada in the year prior to and including the submission deadline. For the 2024 award, the eligibility year runs from November 2, 2022, to November 1, 2023. 

Full-time residents of Atlantic Canada are those who have lived in one or a combination of the Atlantic provinces (New Brunswick, Newfoundland & Labrador, Nova Scotia, or Prince Edward Island) for at least two consecutive years immediately prior to the submission deadline date. A co-authored book is eligible if at least one co-author meets this residency requirement.