Claudia Daventry on €10,000 Moth Poetry Prize shortlist

Claudia Daventry

The Moth Poetry Prize shortlist has been chosen by the American poet Claudia Rankine and includes Poetry Society Member Claudia Daventry for her poem ‘I do not appear in photos’.

Each year, a different poet is asked to judge the prize blind. This year Rankine chose a shortlist that takes in Canada, the UK and Australia. The full shortlist of poems also includes Damen O’Brien, Kate Potts and Nicholas Ruddock. They all feature in the current issue of The Moth.

Rankine praised “the melding of landscape and the body” in Claudia’s poem.

I walked with bees hovering
above the clover of my hair
which was perpetually ruffled
by the light breeze of your breath …

Claudia lives in St Andrews in Scotland. Her poetry is widely published and has won several awards, notably taking first place in the Bridport, Ruskin and Hippocrates prizes. Her chapbook, The Oligarch Loses His Patience, won a Templar Award, and her choral commissions, Songs from the Marsh and Selkie Song, have been performed by the BBC Singers live on Radio 3 and at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games. She is currently researching the effect of light pollution on circadian rhythms, attention and mental health.

Poems by Devreaux Baker, Paula Bohince, Ian Dudley, Cynthia Hughes, James Leader and Oscar Redding were also commended by Claudia Rankine.

The overall winner of €10,000 will be announced at a special award ceremony at Poetry Ireland in Dublin on 30 April (Poetry Day Ireland). Details can be found at

The current issue of The Moth, featuring all four poems, can be purchased at

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11 March 2020