Each year, a Merrill House Brief Residency and stipend will be reserved for the winner of the Yale Series of Younger Poets Competition. The Yale Younger Poetry Prize is the longest running and, arguably, the most prestigious poetry contest in the United States. Since 1919, it has celebrated the most prominent new American poets by bringing the work of these artists to the attention of the larger public. The award is reserved for poets under the age of 40 who have not yet published a book of poetry. More information about the prize and application instructions and be found here.
Our partnership with Yale University Press and our association with the Yale Series of Younger Poets prize is a natural one given our Connecticut location and the fact that James Merrill served as judge for seven terms during the 1980s. Two winners from that era, Daniel Hall and Brigit Kelly, went on to become Merrill House Fellows. Earlier winners of the prize include such talents as Adrienne Rich, John Ashbery, and Robert Hass.
Intended as a resource for scholars, students, writers, and teachers, the James Merrill Digital Archive currently provides digital access to a small cross-section from the James Merrill Papers housed in Special Collections at Washington University in St. Louis.
The James Merrill Papers consists of original manuscripts, drafts, typescripts, diaries, reading notes, college materials, ephemera, and photographs, extensive correspondence with his family, friends, and business associates. Audiovisual and personal material document other aspects of Merrill’s life.