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Three Caribbean Poets Shorlisted for Forward Prizes 2017

Richard Georges, Malika Booker & Ishion Hutchinson shortlisted for Forward Prize

Three Caribbean poets have made it to the 2017 Forward Prizes shortlists as Richard Georges (British Virgin Islands) has received a nod for the Felix Dennis Prize for Best First Collection while Malika Booker (Guyana/Grenada) and Ishion Hutchinson (Jamaica) both contend for the Best Single Poem lists.

Georges’ Make Us All Islands (Shearsman Books) contends with Maria Apichella’s Psalmody (Eyewear Publishing), Eric Langley’s Raking Light (Carcanet), Nick Makoha’s Kingdom Gravity (Peepal Tree Press) and Ocean Vuong’s Night Sky with Exit Wounds (Cape Poetry). 

Hutchinson’s ‘Nightfall, Jane Ash Corner, St. Thomas’ (The Well Review) and Booker’s ‘Nine Nights’ (Poetry Review) are in contention with Mary Jean Chan’s ‘//’ (Ambit), Harmony Holiday’s ‘The City Admits no Wrong Doing (Prac Crit) and Ian Patterson’s The Plenty of Nothing (PN Review).

This year’s Best Collection shortlist comprises:

 Nuar Alsadir  - Fourth Person Singular (Pavillion Poetry)

Tara Bergin - The Tragic Death of Eleanor Marx (Carcanet)

Emily Berry - Stranger, Baby (Faber & Faber)

Michael Longley - Angel Hill (Cape Poetry)

Sinead Morrisey - On Balance (Carcanet)

Journalist and presenter Andrew Marr chairs this year’s adjudication panel which includes poets Mona Arshi, Sandeep Parmar and Ian Duhig, as well as artist Chris Riddell.

The Forward Prizes for Poetry are the most coveted awards for poetry published in Britain and Ireland. It comprises the three prizes – £10,000 for Best Collection, £5,000 for Best First Collection and £1,000 for Best Single Poem. Past Forward Prizes winners include Claudia Rankine, Kei Miller, Seamus Heaney, Alice Oswald, Ted Hughes, Carol Ann Duffy and Kathleen Jamie.

The 2016 prizes were won by Vahni Capildeo (Best Collection), Tiphanie Yanique (Best First Collection) and Sasha Dugdale (Best Single Poem). The winners will be announced in September 2017.