Why would anyone dedicate a poem to Ken Babstock? Here’s why.
The judge was Barry Dempster. Here is his citation:
The music in Matthew Tierney’s ‘Re the Individual Wellbeing’ knocks down the walls between words, but never just for the sake of innovation. There’s a narrative to be untangled, a voice that goes beyond recognition, and an openness that manages to shut itself into amazing atmospheres. The language keeps reaching up off the page and dragging you deep inside the lines. Listen: rustle, Tagalog, throb, blunderbuss, tincture, distraught, yawning, Bach. Some crazy assonance going on here amidst content that swerves between life and death. It’s a risk of a poem written with hurtling grace.
How close is crazy assonance to crazy ass? Very.
Thanks there, Barry.