A moving evocation of a coastal walk has taken out top billing at the 2012 Newcastle Poetry Prize.

Former health insurance executive-turned-writer, Dr David Musgrave, penned the winning entry, titled Coastline. The poem was chosen above 400 others for the impressive $12,000 cash prize.

Dr Musgrave is a lecturer with the School of Humanities and Social Science at the University of Newcastle.  He also won the naming rights to the 2012 Newcastle Poetry Prize Anthology, a hard-copy collection of the best entries from this year’s competition published by the Hunter Writers Centre. The anthology will be distributed in an e-book for the first time this year and is available to buy here.

The Newcastle Poetry Prize, now in its 30th year, is one of Australia’s longest-running literary awards. All entries are judged anonymously, giving both established and emerging poets an equal chance.

This year’s judges were accomplished Melbourne poet Jennifer Harrison and University of Newcastle lecturer Kim Cheng Boey.

The Newcastle Poetry Prize is sponsored by the University, Hunter Writers Centre and Newcastle City Council.