2022 V. Press Prize for Poetry
“Picking a winner from these wasn’t easy, but I eventually went with ‘Braised in wine’ by Trudi Holland. An evocative use of food throughout this manuscript both whets the reader’s appetite and explores how what we eat feeds into (nearly) every other aspect of life, including body image, self-worth and relationships with others. This is also coupled with compelling use of the second person and a mastery of striking last lines.
REVIEWSYou'll need an umbrella for this
“The stories that fill Mary-Jane Holmes’ Set a Crow to Catch a Crow are perfect, precise, highly burnished narrative shards that describe a moment in time but imply both what came before this moment and very likely may come after. It might only be a grain you are offered but you get a whole world. It is only writing of a very high order can pull off the feat that is pulled off here.” Carlo Gébler
Set a Crow to Catch a Crow is very textured and very liminal.
“The poems in Powerless Rangers enchant through their spoken power. They are clear-eyed about what makes us who we are and show true strength through their openness, compassion, and self-knowledge. The humour, language, and energy will win over readers and audiences alike.”
“McGowan’s poems are loud, with their energetic wit and playful meanderings, but they disguise a romantic, nostalgic centre and when it surfaces the audience or reader are encouraged to switch from one emotion to another in a second – which is a delight.”
Powerless Rangers is very nostalgic, and very nineties.
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