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Parwana Fayyaz wins Forward Prize for Best Single Poem

Monday, 21 Oct 2019

Parwana Fayyaz We're delighted to announce that Parwana Fayyaz has won the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem with her poem 'Forty Names', published in PN Review 241!

The prestigious Forward Prize was awarded last night in a ceremony at the Southbank Centre, London. The Forward Prizes event issues prizes in three categories: Best Collection, Best First Collection and Best Single Poem.

Carcanet and PN Review were privileged to have poets in all three categories - Helen Tookey's City of Departures was shortlisted for Best Collection, and Isabel Galleymore's collection Significant Other was shortlisted for the Felix Dennis Prize for Best First Collection. We were overjoyed to be shortlisted, and even more so for Parwana's success!

'Forty Names' was recently featured in The Telegraph as one of the 'Year's Best Poems'. Fayyaz's shortlisted poem retells "a story told by my father or mother when I was a child," she says, "a story about forty women jumping off a cliff to preserve their honour.
"It is about a mountain called kohichehal dokhtaran, the forty girls’ mountain... We are now more familiar with the mountain that was named after this (perhaps semi-mythical) story, but not the names of the forty girls." By giving names to the girls, Fayyaz also gives them agency, encouraging the reader to see their story in a new light."

Congratulations Parwana, and to all the winners and shortlisted poets!

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