In March at Tweetspeak Poetry, I had a series of articles on the poetry collections nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award. One of those collections was Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine, a series of prose poems on what it means to be Black in contemporary America.
Citizen won the National Book Critics Circle Award for best poetry collection. Monday night in London, Citizen was also selected as the winner of the Forward Poetry Prize for best poetry collection. The prizes kick off the London Literary Festival, which goes on for two weeks and includes readings, lectures, book signings, and other literary events.
Rankine’s work is powerful. As I said in the review at Tweetspeak Poetry, you don’t read a collection like Citizen and remain unchanged.