Judges’ Comments

In a year with such strong representation from established names, it’s remarkable that a press focused on emerging talent has made such a powerful impact on this years’ judges. More than half of ignition’s pamphlets this year were debuts and – from the emotional intensity of Kostya Tsolakis’ Athens adolescence in Ephebos to Zein Sa’dedin’s evocation of the neighbourhoods on the seven hills of Amman in Staircase – these pamphlets have a unity that belies their rich diversity. Whether it’s down to the iconic design which lends a seriousness to the pamphlet as a form, or the high level of dedication to developing and mentoring the emerging poets it publishes, the result is a press that publishes tight, well-worked and vital early collections that sit together as well as they stand apart.





The 2021 Shortlists

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