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Back to Life by Michael Vince

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The idea of things coming back to life runs through all three parts of this collection. The first section explores the contemporary world of the pandemic lockdown period through interpretations of experiences, many of them limited to photographs and video, others stimulated by reading. This section ends with the return to life of the neighbourhood.

The second section is a further exploration of neighbourhood, with poems which bring back to life people and places, known and lesser known, from the Greenwich area where the poet lives. Some are only street names, others, names lost and often hard to recover. The poems seek to locate different aspects of life in one place, and to make more sense of belonging to that place by a willed recovery of its past.

The final section holds poems written during the author's decade-and-ahalf spent in Greece, bringing back aspects of this past life, with its personal, political and historical themes.

[Michael Vince] appears committed to the idea that poetry presents itself objectively, however personal and subjective its inspiration…. Emotions are created by sound and sharply focused images.

- Edmund Prestwich in The North

... he excels at recouping lost memory…

… The troubling idea that the past never disappears, only fades, recurs in Vince's elegant poems of personal reflection.

- Kevin Gardner in PNR

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