The work of Blue Nib Chapbook Four winner, Pat Anthony: Place and people are inextricably linked in this evocative collection of poems. They bristle with observational details that a less skilful writer might miss – a man pedals night into day, the moon is scrawled with the arpeggios of an accordion player. Each voice here is convincing and urgent. Memorable, exact and compelling.
Second Place Poet, Mike Farren (above): In the words of Helen Mort, I was intrigued and hooked by the strange confidence of the work: ‘Antennae’ suggests we should plug antlers from the forest floor to the sides of our heads. The pieces that follow are richly sensory – ‘summer smells of money’, the body is a quarry. Alert and attentive writing, poems suffused with an original language for memory.
Third Place Poet, Sharon Flynn: From the first, these poems feel like recipes, full of rich details and imperatives. In one piece, surgery before pain relief is described with a clarity that makes the reader shudder. Visceral and haunting, unabashed and sharply observed, full of found material curated with skill and emotion, which is no mean feat.
1 – The Blue Nib Chapbook Four – Pat Anthony, Mike Farren, Sharon Flynn (Independently published, 2019)
2 – Present Conditions – Joseph Massey (Hollyridge Press, 2018)
3 – Puro Amor – Sandra Cisneros (Sarabande Books, 2018)
4 – Families and Other Fiascoes – Anthony Lombardy, Maryann Corbett, Vera Ignatowitsch, A.E. Stallings, Chris O’Carroll, Susan de Sola, Jane Blanchard, Michael R. Burch, Edmund Conti, Tom Vaughan (Sampson Low, 2019)
5 – The Cows – Lydia Davis (Sarabande Books, 2011)
6 – The Castle of Blood – William Meikle (Independently published, 2019)
7 – On Imagination – Mary Ruefle (Sarabande Books, 2017)
8 – Will You Still Love Me if I Love Her? – Elfie (Independently published, 2019)
9 – Purity of Aim: The Book Jacket Designs of Alvin Lustig – Ned Drew and Paul Sternberger (RIT Press, 2010)
10 – Sweet & Sour – Paula Jeffery (Harefield Press, 2019)