Really happy to have my poem Chiroptera: Seven Ages of Juliane Koepcke shortlisted for the 2020 Montreal Poetry Prize!
For about the last week I’ve been trying to imagine which of the judges put my poem on the shortlist. There are so many names I admire on the competition jury: CAConrad, Kaveh Akbar, Wendy Cope, John Leonard, Gillian Sze…I’ll stop there.
And the final decision made by Yusef Komunyakaa, it’s still a little hard to imagine him reading one of my poems.
Here’s an extract from the poem:
Chiroptera: Seven Ages of Juliane Koepcke
& Juliane is reborn through clouds, with a polished coin
under her tongue, no wings. Lightning scrawls history
on the sky; bats cradle her falling, each scream swaddled
in leathery wings. Metal, fire and loved bodies cascade;
her brief infancy is sonar — screeches and rushing air.
It’s a great shortlist – the rest of the poems are definitely worth a look!
For the curious, just google Juliane Koepcke, it’s an amazing story.