August 7, 2022

APSU Zone 3 Press’s First Poetry Reading Book Set for September 16

Update: The event has been moved virtual due to the increase in the number of COVID-19

Austin Peay State University - APSUClarksville, Tennessee – Poets Paige Lewis, Komal Mathew and Emily Spencer will visit Austin Peay State University (APSU) on September 16, 2021 for the Zone 3 Press Book Prize first poetry reading.

The reading is a celebration of Mathew and Spencer, co-winners of the 2020 Poetry Book First Prize. Lewis was the judge who chose them as the winners.

The reading also celebrates Mathew and Spencer’s new books. Zone 3 Press will be releasing Mathew’s “For Daughters Who Walk Out Like Sons” and Spencer’s “East Walnut Hills” this month.

The poetry reading will take place at 7:00 p.m. on September 16 via Zoom at this link. The event is sponsored by the Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts and is free and open to the public.

Mathew and Spencer will sign their books after the reading. You can pre-order their books at the Austin Peay Marketplace.

About poetry

Mathew “introduces us to a speaker obsessed with not only leaving home but also being greeted when he returns:“ The first time I heard / the story of the prodigal son, / I was there. ‘college and I was still jealous,’ writes Lewis.

Mathew’s poems are filled with questions about the trip, according to the Zone 3 blog which announced the winners.

“In this mind-boggling book, Mathew lists the dangers that lie ahead in the open world, and she shows us why it’s always worth exploring,” the blog read.

Lewis was also impressed with Spencer’s work.

“In ‘East Walnut Hills’ the divine and the everyday are indistinguishable from each other,” writes Lewis. “Emily Spencer walks us through these poems like through the wings of a living museum, imploring us to take our time and watch – really watch.”

About the poets

Mathew is a graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology and Sarah Lawrence College. His poems have been published in Poetry, Diode Poetry Journal, Beloit Poetry Journal, Crazyhorse, Narrative and The New Republic. She is the co-founding editor-in-chief of Josephine Quarterly.

Spencer received an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and was a global scholar at Boston University. His poems have appeared in the Kenyon Review, Poetry and Pleiades.

Lewis is the author of “Space Struck” and has published poems in Poetry, American Poetry Review, Plowshares, Best New Poets 2017, Gulf Coast, The Massachusetts Review, The Georgia Review, The Iowa Review, Poetry Northwest, and Ninth Letter.

The Zone 3 Press First Book Award in Poetry is biennial and reopens in 2022. Zone 3 awards the Nonfiction Book Award in other years and will announce the winners later this fall. You can find out more about Zone 3 and its contests on its website,