Saddiq Dzukogi Awarded the Derek Walcott Prize for Poetry

Saddiq Dzukogi, an assistant professor of English at Mississippi State University, is the winner of the third annual Derek Walcott Prize for Poetry. The prize is presented to a living poet who is not a U.S. citizen for a full-length book of poems published in the previous year. In addition to a cash award, Dr. Dzukogi will conduct a reading at the Boston Playwrights’ Theatre and have a week-long residency at Derek Walcott’s home in either St. Lucia or in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad, during the Walcott Festival this year.

Dr. Dzukogi was honored for his collection Your Crib, My Qibla (University of Nebraska Press, 2021). The author states that “the book is about a father’s rebellion against death and its realities. It is an attempt to massage memory and imagination, to manifest both ethereal and physical experiences with a deceased child.”

“It is an immense honor for my name to be associated with Derek Walcott in any way or form,” Dr. Dzukogi said. “I feel so seen and in this way the memory and name of my daughter, who the book immortalizes, persists. I hope I can use this recognition as a door to something even greater.”

A native of Nigeria, Dr. Dzukogi holds a  bachelor’s degree in mass communication from Ahmadu Bello University in Nigeria. He earned a Ph.D. in English with a specialization in ethnic studies and creative writing from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

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