A huge congratulations to Mary Jean Chan, whose poem ‘The Window’, first published in 2018 as one of the winning poems in the National Poetry Competition, has been shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem. You can read the poem on The Poetry Society’s website, and listen to Mary Jean Chan read ‘The Window’ at our Soundcloud page or via your podcasting app of choice.
Additionally, two winners of The Poetry Society’s Ted Hughes Award for New Work in Poetry have now seen their works shortlisted for the Felix Dennis Prize for Best First Collection: Jay Bernard and Ray Antrobus. Ray Antrobus’s The Perseverence (Penned in the Margins) won the 2018 Ted Hughes Award, and Jay Bernard’s Surge (Chatto & Windus) won the Award in 2017, in its earlier incarnation as Surge: Side A, a staged performance piece. Antrobus is also a judge of the 2019 Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award.
Also in the running for the Felix Dennis Prize is 2016 National Poetry Competition winner Stephen Sexton, for his collection If All the World and Love Were Young (Penguin Books).
The shortlisted collections from Fiona Benson, Vidyan Ravinthiran, Niall Campbell and Ilya Kaminsky also feature poems first published in The Poetry Review. Emily Berry interviewed Fiona Benson for The Poetry Review’s podcast, where she also read her poems ‘Fly’ and ‘[Zeus] Anatomical Dolls’, both of which feature in her shortlisted collection.
Congratulations to all shortlisted poets! The winners will be announced on 20 October 2019 by the Forward Arts Foundation.
Forward Prize for Best Collection (£10,000)
Fiona Benson – Vertigo & Ghost (Cape Poetry)
Niall Campbell – Noctuary (Bloodaxe Books)
Ilya Kaminsky – Deaf Republic (Faber & Faber)
Vidyan Ravinthiran – The Million-petalled Flowers of Being Here (Bloodaxe Books)
Helen Tookey – City of Departures (Carcanet)
Felix Dennis Prize for Best First Collection (£5,000)
Raymond Antrobus – The Perseverance (Penned in the Margins)
Jay Bernard – Surge (Chatto & Windus)
David Cain – Truth Street (Smokestack Books)
Isabel Galleymore – Significant Other (Carcanet)
Stephen Sexton – If All the World and Love Were Young (Penguin Books)
Forward Prize for Best Single Poem (£1,000)
Liz Berry – Highbury Park (Wild Court)
Mary Jean Chan – The Window (National Poetry Competition)
Jonathan Edwards – Bridge (The Frogmore Papers)
Parwana Fayyaz – Forty Names (PN Review)
Holly Pester – Comic Timing (Granta Magazine)