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And to Ecstasy

2023 - Shortlisted


Judges' Comments

And to Ecstasy is a work of witness to the layered spaces of history: ‘a voice singing to itself / above the spectacle of flame’. Agile and attentive, these poems map transits, moving between named and nameless places, ‘breath[ing] the momentary’ but probing beyond the corporeal and material to consider the spectral and spiritual. Open to mystery and discovery, the poems are openings, invitations to consider the flickering and provisional nature of human lives. 

And to Ecstasy begins with the body in motion, expanding into the metaphysical and mystical. Mossammaparast’s is a poetic voice of great inventiveness and integrity. The poems are fresh and vital as they explore the transnational and political in novel ways. Mobile fragments suggest the exilic, while returns and echoes evoke forms of repair the work moves towards in its embrace of the ecstatic. Translation, transition and transcendence recur as motifs in this exhilarating collection.