I am delighted and honoured that my recent collection, A Book of Rooms (Deep South, 2014) was named the winner of the African Poetry Book Fund’s 2015 Glenna Luschei Prize for African Poetry.
The prize was judged by award-winning poet and scholar Gabeba Baderoon. Baderoon said of the collection: “Moolman’s poems in this collection are electric, visceral, brilliantly experimental, and profoundly moving.” She goes on to explain the sense of movement through the different rooms in the book: “Through this close reading of spaces, we trace walls, windows, curtains, corners; our attention caught by the cut beneath the door, illumination flaring from glints of memory . . . Yet if his flesh is betrayed, and his heart breaks into silence and shame, the hole in his [the boy’s] heart also opens into speech.”
The African Poetry Book Fund seeks to celebrate and cultivate the poetic arts of Africa. The Glenna Luschei Prize, funded by literary philanthropist and poet Glenna Luschei and the only pan-African book prize of its kind, promotes African poetry written in English or in translation by recognizing a significant book published each year by an African poet.
Kwame Dawes, director of the African Poetry Book Fund, said, “Every time we bring attention to the wonderful poetry being written by African poets today, we are enacting something quite important for African literary arts, and Moolman, whose poetry I have followed for a number of years, is a poet that more people should know.”