Moya de Feyter

Belgium

Moya De Feyter writes poetry, theatre scripts and prose. She studied Literature and Theatre Science in Antwerp. Her poems won various awards such as the University of Antwerp Poetry Contest, Write Now!, Frappant and appeared in many publications such as Het Liegend Konijn and Deus Ex Machina before her debut collection Tot iemand eindelijk (Until someone finally) was published in 2018 by Uitgeverij Vrijdag. Her book was nominated for the Poëziedebuutprijs aan Zee and received an honourable mention from the jury of the C. Buddingh Prize. A year later, she published her second book Massastrandingen (Mass strandings). Massastrandingen is a kaleidoscopic prose poem about climate change, marine mammals, orange trees, storms and love, in which she breaks away from the traditional structure of poetry books by experimenting with narrative and typography. Lately, she’s been collecting stories from the dusty shelves of mythology and nature worship, trying to find a way out of the blinking lights of capitalism, and she’s also travelling through Flanders and the Netherlands to present her work to an audience through poetry performances.


Moya De Feyter studied Theatre Science at the University of Antwerp. She writes theatre pieces, poetry and prose and lectures occasionally. In addition to her theatre texts, she also performs her poetry on stage. As part of the project Het Schrijversgevang (The Writer’s Prison) she agreed to be locked up for a week in the Monty Kultuurfactorij, a theatre in Antwerp. At the end of the week “she bought herself out” with a new show. In addition, with her alter-ego Ambrosia, Moya De Feyter is also part of the Poëziebordeel (the Poetry Brothel). Among other things, she has won Frappant TXT (2015), SOET 18+ (2015), the Poetry Competition of the University of Antwerp (2017) and she placed in the finals of Write Now (2012 and 2017).

After a few publications in literary journals such as Deus ex MachinaHet Liegend KonijnDe PoëziekrantKluger Hans... De Feyter had two volumes published at Uitgeverij Vrijdag. Her debut Tot iemand eindelijk (Until someone finally) (2018) was nominated for Poëziedebuut Aan Zee (2019) and got an honourable mention from the jury for the C. Buddingh’ prize. Her second collection Massastrandingen (Mass Strandings) (2019) is a mixture of poetry, prose and dialogue.

Dirk De Geest describes her poetry debut on the review website Mappa Libri as ‘fascinating and fresh’ (De Geest, 2018). Reviewer Maurice Broere also describes the work as an ‘auspicious debut’ (Broere, 2018). More specifically, he mentions the fluctuation between more traditional and more experimental poems. Although the collection has a lot of fluctuation, De Geest still discerns that the young poet has her own tone. In particular, her poems tell stories about an I-figure who is in search of her own identity. That identity is not yet ‘finished’, something reflected in the unfinished title Tot iemand eindelijk (De Geest, 2018). In Meander, Moya De Feyter clarifies that unfinished figure. In her poetry, she often describes a loss that has or has not occurred which teaches the poet to see herself ‘not as something whole, but as an unfinished work, full of gaps and bulges [...] The collection mainly contains words, sentences and images [...] that urgently needed to get out because they had been sitting and waiting so long’ (Meander, 2019). She also mentions that there’s always something that doesn’t sit quite right in her poetry, which is a reference to the uncomfortable world. ‘You are [namely] never sure that you have anything. Possessing something is an illusion’, says De Feyter (Meander, 2019).

Broere (2018) also points out that the debut collection often ‘is searching for shape’. In that connection, he refers to the many prose poems in the collection. According to him, better justice would be done to those poems in a performance (Broere, 2018). De Geest also mentions that strong oral trend in Tot iemand eindelijk achieved by means of the associative style (De Geest, 2018). De Feyter herself believes ‘strongly in the oral tradition of poetry’ and she finds it ‘magical when people get together to read poems to each other. That love will somehow or other have penetrated into the paper’ (Meander, 2019). Even though she is not over the moon about her reputation as a stage poet, she does not deny the influence of the spoken word on her written work. 

Her second collection, Massastrandingen lies somewhere between a long poem and an essay. Although her first collection does not form a clear whole, Massastrandingen has a more obvious narrative. The various story lines running through each other lead to a certain climax (Meander, 2019). Yvan De Maesschalck (2019) also mentions that clear narrative. He mentions that Massastrandingen is constructed out of a dialogue amongst various I-figures. That I-figure places itself in the midst of the issues outlined in the collection (Dera, 2019). Moreover, the poems are filled to the brim with echoes of works from the same collection, but her debut collection is also evoked by the words: “nobody has ever been here” (De Maesschalck, 2019).

De Feyter’s intention for this collection is to relate something that is important to her, in the hope that others will also find it important (Meander, 2019). That intention seems to have succeeded. For example, in De Standaard, Jeroen Dera remarks that ‘Moya De Feyter [knows] how to capture the problem of her generation in literature; nature, that all of us are destroying’ (Dera, 2019). He therefore sees a great deal of potential in the collection.

SOURCES:

Broere, M. (16 September 2018). Moya De Feyter – Tot iemand eindelijk (Until someone finally). Poëzie zegt meer met minder (Poetry says more with less) - MEANDER. Consulted on 29 October 2019, from : https://meandermagazine.nl/2018/09/moya-de-feyter-tot-iemand-eindelijk/

De Geest, D. (October 2018). Moya de Feyter: Tot iemand eindelijk – MAPPA LIBRI. Consulted on 29 October 2019, from http://mappalibri.be/?navigatieid=61&via_navigatieid=17&recensieid=7624

De Maesschalck, Y. (September 2019). “Huid is ook maar huis en soms is die ontroostbaar” (“Skin is only home and sometimes it is inconsolable”). Poëziekrant, 52–55.

Dera, J. (20 September 2019). Alles naar de haaien (Everything to wrack and ruin). De Standaard, pp. L8–L9.

MEANDER. (28 March 2019). ”In alles in de wereld is iets aanwezig dat vernietigt” (Everything in the world has something within it that destroys) - MEANDER. Consulted on 29 October 2019, from https://meandermagazine.nl/2019/03/in-alles-in-de-wereld-is-iets-aanwezig-dat-vernietigt/