Judges Jean Sprackland (Chair), Hannah Lowe and Roger Robinson have chosen the 2022 T. S. Eliot Prize shortlist from a record 201 poetry collections submitted by British and Irish publishers. Amongst the shortlisted books that have been described by the T.S. Eliot Prize judges as ‘unflinching in their explorations of love and grief, brutality and desire’, are Yomi Ṣode‘s debut collection Manorism and Anthony Joseph‘s Sonnets for Albert. Both poets were awarded the Jerwood Compton Poetry Fellowship in 2019 for their outstanding work and their potential to illustrate the breadth of what poetry can be. The Fellowships gave Yomi and Anthony the time to work on their collections, with the support of mentoring and the award.
Yomi Ṣode’s Manorism is a poetic examination of the lives of Black British men and boys: propped up and hemmed in by contemporary masculinity, deepened by family, misrepresented in the media, and complicated by the riches, and the costs, of belonging and inheritance. It is also an exploration of the differences of impunity afforded to white and Black people, and to white and Black artists.
With Sonnets for Albert, Anthony Joseph returns to the autobiographical material explored in his earlier collection Bird Head Son. In this follow-up, he weighs the impact of being the son of an absent, or mostly absent, father. Though these poems threaten to break under the weight of their emotions, they are always masterfully poised as the stylish man they depict.
The full T.S. Eliot Shortlist includes:
Victoria Adukwei Bulley – Quiet* (Faber & Faber)Fiona Benson – Ephemeron (Cape Poetry)Jemma Borg– Wilder (Pavilion Poetry/Liverpool University Press)Philip Gross – The Thirteenth Angel (Bloodaxe Books)Anthony Joseph – Sonnets for Albert (Bloomsbury Poetry)Zaffar Kunial– England’s Green (Faber & Faber)Mark Pajak– Slide* (Cape Poetry)James Conor Patterson– bandit country* (Picador Poetry)Denise Saul– The Room Between Us* (Pavilion Poetry/Liverpool University Press)Yomi Ṣode– Manorism* (Penguin Poetry)
Find out more
Read more about the T.S. Eliot Prize here.
Find out more about Manorism and where to order your copy here.
Find out more about Sonnets for Albert and where to order your copy here.
Find out more about the Jerwood Compton Poetry Fellowships here.