More about the winners in 2023 …

Highly Commended – Luisa Mitchell for ‘Salty Plum’

Second Prize winner – Isabella G. Mead for ‘The Transfer’

First Prize winner – Lesh Karan for ‘Twenty-one + Answers to Your Question’

Comments on the winning poems by the judges…

Luisa Mitchell’s Highly Commended poem ‘Salty Plum’ takes us to a home characterized by the colours and textures of Country, as well as the complex business of the adult child cycling back to the anchor of the mother. ‘Home’ is what ‘lingers,’ as sharp and evocative as the taste of ‘Fong’s salty plums.’

In describing the carrying of child from car to house, Isabella G. Mead’s Second Prize Winner poem ‘The Transfer’ speaks of the ways in which the bodies of those we love become quite literally the territory of home. In this poem, the mother’s body is ‘scooped’ against the weight of the sleeping child, creating a place of safety and belonging

First Prize winner, Lesh Karan’s wonderful poem, ‘Twenty-one + Answers to Your Question,’ evokes with startling and vivid imagery the many places, factors, words and experiences of mind and senses that make s who we are. As Karan makes clear, ‘home’ or ‘where I am from,’ is not a simple place or concept – it is the rich blend of what we have experienced and what we have been given, and how it might continue to shape who we are.


The 2023 Liquid Amber Poetry Prize asked poets to respond to textual and visual prompts on the theme of ‘home’.

We have already congratulated our Long List poets – our 7 Short List poets – and our Emerging Poet winners.

Now the Highly Commended, First and Second Prize Winners – drum roll….

>  Highly Commended – Luisa Mitchell for her poem ‘Salty Plum’.  Luisa is also an Emerging Poets Prize Winner

> Second Prize – Isabella G. Mead for her poem ‘The Transfer’

> First prize – Lesh Karan for her poem ‘Twenty-one + Answers to Your Question’

Congratulations to everyone who participated – fantastic effort. And a huge thank you to our judges Anne M. Carson, Rose Lucas and last year’s winner, Reneé Pettitt-Schipp.

First and Second prize winners received cash prizes ($1,000 and $500 respectively).

The Emerging Poet winners received an editing pack with Rose Lucas and Anne M.Carson.

All the poems on the Long List are published in the anthology Poetry of Home – launched by Jennifer Harrison at our Poetry Zoom Thursday 30 November.