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Write On! Local Writers Recognized By Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets

Peggy Trojan and Jessi Peterson take home second place and honorable mention awards for recently published chapbooks

Rebecca Mennecke |

TWO LOCAL POETS, TWO GREAT AWARDS. The Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets recently recognized local poets Jessi Peterson and Peggy Trojan for their recent collections of poetry.
TWO LOCAL POETS, TWO GREAT AWARDS. The Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets recently recognized local poets Jessi Peterson and Peggy Trojan for their recent collections of poetry.

Two local poets were recently awarded as part of the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets’ annual chapbook contest, which recognizes great poetry collections published in 2020 by Wisconsin residents. 

Local poet Peggy Trojan took second place for her recent chapbook River, and Jessi Peterson – children’s librarian at the Chippewa Falls Public Library – took first runner up for Century Farm. First-place prize was awarded to Vaginas Need Air by Tori Grant Welhouse, who lives just outside of Green Bay. 

It has been a tough year as far as writing goes, I think probably for many of us

Jessi Peterson

Local Poet

“I was pretty pleased to get the recognition,” Peterson said. “It has been a tough year as far as writing goes, I think probably for many of us.” 

River explores Trojan’s experience after pulling her husband out of a care facility amid a battle against dementia. She began writing free-verse poems about her husband’s last months of life. “We are happy,” she writes, “hold hands / like young lovers.” 

The judges of the contest found it “rare to find a poetic sequence that is as gripping as a novel” and were “deeply moved” by her writing. 

Century Farm was Peterson’s debut publication, and explores a life of rural Midwestern living, focusing on locality. 

“There are many poems about the countryside, but most seem written by people who view the landscape from their deck chairs,” the judge wrote. “Peterson’s book… sees beyond the pastoral view into the grit of the land.” 


Learn more about the contest – and the recipients – at www.wfop.org.