Winner of the Lighthouse Poetry Series Competition
Selected by Randall Mann


Wray’s poems are wry luxury items of intelligence, sheathed in the latent double of speech, where a word like family might mean, in the queer parlance, refuge, but also, refutation. This is an interrogative, primal, mythic collection, a poetry of privacy and disclosure, of contradiction, a disabused landscape under “razor-wire stars.” RANDALL MANN

No Doubt I Will Return a Different Man explores how complicated relationships between fathers and sons cast long shadows over the future self. In Wray’s poems, eros shades at times uncomfortably into social violence and self-abnegation, making this book both love song and elegy to masculinity and its performances, to queerness, and to self-invention. Wray’s sharp-eared lyrics move between the darkly campy and the sublime, proving that paternal elegies themselves are “queer things” whose shifting modes allow him to investigate the limits of fatherhood itself.  PAISLEY REKDAL

Situated in the long posterity of one of the most infamously shattered queer lives, this tense excavation of Alan Turing, this careful and sumptuous overlay of men’s secrecies and assignations seventy years apart, is fascinating. No Doubt I Will Return a Different Man delves for origins, stirs encryption with erotics, and makes “caught looking” palpable in its thrill and thrall. BRIAN BLANCHFIELD


The Last Orgasm,” 

Each of Us Chimera,” The Georgia Review 

The Bloom’s Beauty Is Insistence,” Hunger Mountain 

On the Nature of or Relating To,” Impossible Archetype  

All the Grand Deaths,” Blackbird

“Sci-fi Aubade,” American Literary Review 

Buggery,” American Academy of Poets 

False Spring for Telemachus,” Mississippi Review

Beginning’s End,” Meridian

Music Arises from Component Parts or the Dream of a Clarinet,”
Split This Rock Poem-of-the-Week

Turing Tested” and “Samson Agonistes,” The Arkansas International

“In My Dream, Turing Shows Me His Greatest Machine,” Verse Daily