Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Falling Awake by Alice Oswald.

I've been enjoying reading Falling Awake by Alice Oswald. I think this latest collection is absolutely outstanding. I've only read the first half a dozen poems and I'm completely hooked.

The book won the Costa poetry prize for 2016. And it was short listed for the T. S. Eliot prize.

I remember when she won the T. S. Eliot prize for her book Dart. I was totally mesmerised by it. This collection is doing something similar.

Oswald is a nature poet. She's brutal and elemental in her depiction of her Dartmoor surroundings. She pays close attention to detail. She brings the reader up close to her subject. We are present with her at dawn, a dead swan or badger. On one level their is a mindful presence about the experience of reading. Or are we kneeling in reverence at her subjects. 

Her writing is accessible - and yet she is not comforting. There is a music in her language but the song is not easy. 

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