Friday, June 12           7:00 p.m.

Zoom info: SDPA Celebration Zoom Meeting

Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 509 513 7393

The San Diego Poetry Annual (SDPA) and Border Voices Poetry Project (BV) present our first combined online reading and open mic.

Our features for the evening are the first ever San Diego Poet Laureate Ron Salisbury, Garden Oak Press author Al Zolynas, writers published in the SDPA 2019-20 and the upcoming BV anthology (Springtime in Paradise), and you! Ron and Al will each read three poems to start. Then we will “pass the mic” to any poet who’d like to share one poem.

We will give preference to poets published in SDPA, but we would also like to hear from writers who have not yet worked with us or published in our anthologies. Let’s hear your great work! To sign up early, email Michael Klam at mkklam@gmail.com.

Your hosts for the evening are Michael Klam, Executive Editor of SDPA, and Ying Wu, Executive Editor of KSDPA.





Both volumes of the 2019-20 San Diego Poetry Annual were published simultaneously on March 1st.

The cover art, Pájaro y Mapa — Bird and Map, comes from Amaranta Caballero Prado, a regular contributing poet to the bilingual volume.  Choose Cover Photo from the menu to see the cover.

The volume of poems in English runs 530 pages and features honorees in The Kowit 2019, Poems from Juvenile Hall, poems from Veterans, including veterans in jail, Native Poets, and a new Slam Poetry special section — plus poems from the finest poets in our region and beyond. The retail price is $24.50 (plus tax and shipping) at Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com, Powells.com, and through bookstores.

The bilingual volume of poems, Décimo Aniversario — Tenth Anniversary edition — written in Spanish and translated into English contains 64 poems by 97 poets and translators, and edited by SDPA Regional Editor Olga García. It retails at $14.00 online and through bookstores.

Complete lists of poems/poets from both volumes will be available on this website under the menu heading Poets and Poems 2019-20 SDPA.

Contributing poets, friends and organizations/institutions can buy the new volumes at the special discount rate: $15 for the volume in English, $6 for the bilingual volume. Choose How to Order from the main menu.  Pre-paid orders will be accepted through March 31st.

On March 1, 2020, a PDF of each new volume will be posted under the menu heading Free PDF of the annual.  The PDF serves as the complimentary copy to all contributors.

The Kowit, 2019

UPDATE:  Due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, the awards ceremony for The Kowit 2019 has been cancelled

Honorees will be invited to next year’s event. All cash prizes and certificates of merit will be delivered by mail.

The event had been scheduled to be held Friday, March 20, 2020, starting at 6:30 p.m. on the 9th-floor rooftop Shiley Special Event Center at Central Library, downtown San Diego.  Host:  Marc Chery, Humanities Supervisor. Co-host and emcee: Jeff Walt

Congratulations to all:

The Steve Kowit Poetry Prize


Memories of Coronado — Greg Bell

2nd Place:    For My Blind Man     Gail Entrekin

3rd Place: Tukanukaru — Jessica Turcat

Honorable Mention

(alphabetically, by poet)

Ode to Hip-Hop                 Jayne Brown

Smash an avocado           Carrie Callaway

Self Portrait as Andy Ruiz

 the First Mexican-American Heavy Weight Champion

Karla Cordero

La Dolce Vita      Christopher Cordry

the return             Nancy Dimsdale

Hope     Frank DiPalermo

The Danger of Moonglow               Frank DiPalermo

Richard Hugo, I Met You Only Once          George Drew

Cloaks         Trish Dugger

Outhouse Glass                 James Evans

The Atlantic Beach Club, 1982      Janlori Goldman

Constant              Jonathan Greenhause

Sunshower over the Rappahannock

 at My Friend Ann’s River House                Valerie Hastings

Scrabbling           Rebekah Heaney

Wrestling with an Angel                Kenneth Jensen

All the Way         Sylvia Levinson

A Modest Surmisal           Matt Miller

Chances Are       Suzanne O’Connell

Lassie Has Anger Issues                 Suzanne O’Connell

Walking Along the Service Road that Borders the Asparagus Field,

Not Far Beyond Asylum Creek       Greg Rappleye

Elegy for a Friend              Lynda Riese

     Poems advancing to the Finals receive a minimum of Honorable Mention and publication in the San Diego Poetry Annual.

Cash Prize winners ($1350 total) to be presented at the annual awards ceremony

Poets reading at the awards ceremony also receive an honorarium of $50.

2019 JudgeJudy Reeves 

2020 JudgeRon Salisbury

2021 Judge:  Dorianne Laux

2022 JudgeKim Addonizio

  • Open for entries on June 15 through October 15 annually.
  • Click on The Kowit on our main menu, or visit www.sdeag.org for complete entry details.


The Regional Editors and Publisher of the San Diego Poetry Annual have nominated six poems and one translation from our 2018-19 editions for a Pushcart Prize in Poetry

reg e gainesStolen Car

Trish Dugger:  Downtown Jungle

Harry Griswold: On the Marriage Sled

Michele Karas: for first wives who have considered suicide when wateraerobics are enough

Hubert Matiúwàa: Èjèn Mè’phàà

              Mè’phàà Boys, translations by the author and by Johanna Malcher and Laura Elliott

Terry Spohn:  The Big Store

Congratulations to these poets and translators, with thanks for allowing us to publish their work.



The bilingual volume of the San Diego Poetry Annual, edited by Olga Garcia, continues to be used as a text book at Southwestern Community College.

The college bookstore stocks the bilingual volume for purchase by students in the English composition class taught by Dr. Francisco J. Bustos, a regular contributor to the annual.

In keeping with its policy of creating permanent status for the annual in public and university libraries throughout the region, San Diego Entertainment + Arts Guild  makes copies of the bilingual volume available at actual cost to the college and earns no profit from the sales.