A book-length poem that the OCM Bocas prize for Caribbean Literature judges consider “post-colonial poetry at its best” has triumphed in the stakes for best book by a Caribbean writer published last year.
The Dyzgraphxst by St Lucia-born poet Canisia Lubrin is the 2021 winner of the prize, which comes with an award of US$10,000 courtesy One Caribbean Media.
It is the second consecutive year that a poet has won the international annual award for Caribbean writing, and the fourth poetry win in the 11-year history of the prize.
Lubrin is the third St Lucia-born writer to win the overall prize, all for poetry.
Vahni Capildeo, a poet from TT, winner of the Forward Poetry Prize, and chief judge of this year’s OCM Bocas prize made the announcement online via the Bocas Lit Fest website, Facebook, and YouTube in a virtual presentation on April 24.
Joining her on the final judging panel for the prize were Jamaican poet and academic Opal Palmer Adisa, Trinidadian-American writer and scholar Rosamond S King, and Malachi McIntosh, editor of the UK-based literary journal Wasafiri.
The Dyzgraphxst, published by Penguin Random House Canada, was chosen by the judges from a short list of the three books previously selected as category winners, which included Jamaica-born Maisy Card’s debut novel These Ghosts Are Family – the best book of fiction by a Caribbean writer in 2020 – and Trinidadian Andre Bagoo’s wide-ranging collection of essays The Undiscovered Country – the best non-fiction book of 2020 by a Caribbean author. Card and Bagoo, a former Newsday journalist, will receive awards of US$3,000 each.
In her judge’s remarks Capildeo said The Dyzgraphxst “is exciting, experimental, and maintains integrity from beginning to end…Aware of and alive with the impulses and innovations of Aimé Césaire, Dionne Brand, and so many more revolutionary thinkers with whom we have been blessed.
(Read more at:- https://newsday.co.tt/2021/04/25/st-lucian-poet-canisia-lubrin-wins-ocm-bocas-best-book-prize/)