MARCH 1, 2021
WINNER OF THE FIRST ANNUAL POETRY CHAPBOOK CONTEST
Raven Chapbooks is excited to announce the winner of our first annual poetry chapbook contest:
KYEREN REGEHR for DISASSEMBLING A DANCER
Kyeren Regehr’s first collection, Cult Life (Pedlar Press), was listed by CBC as a Spring 2020 poetry book to watch out for. She has twice received grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and has served on the poetry board of The Malahat Review. Her work has been published in literary journals and anthologies in Canada, Australia and the U.S.
Kyeren was born in Sydney, Australia and spent many years in the world of theatre and dance, both performing and teaching. She earned her MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Victoria and worked as a sessional instructor and teaching assistant.
Kyeren lives in Victoria B.C.
The judges for this year’s contest were Yvonne Blomer and Robert Hilles. Here is the judges’ citation for this powerful sequence of poems:
“The poems in Disassembling A Dancer are en pointe, the language bruised and striking. What at first surprised us with the density of the lines and text, delighted with the evocative language of the dancer, the body, broken, and the accompanying metaphors – “Brick those quads … not a fat-jiggle, not a teaspoon of Jell-O”. The poet here knows her subject intimately, and the language of this art and its abuse on each body part is beautiful and deeply rendered. She pulls the rigorous details throughout this series. As judges, we could not resist – not the triumph, nor the grief so essential to the dancer being disassembled, one pained joint by one broken coccyx. Those twenty-six pairs of pointe shoes she gets rid of, that final pair of red shoes fastened to her feet.”