A powerful new collection from one of our leading contemporary poets, reflecting the strange and chaotic times we live in.
Reeling in the face of collapsing systems, of politics and identity and the absurdities of reality TV, Nick Laird confronts age-old anxieties, questions of aloneness, of friendship, the push and pull of daily life. At the book’s heart lies the title sequence, a profound meditation on a father’s dying, the reverberations of which echo through the other poems in accounts of what is lost and what, if anything, can be retrieved. There is rage and fire, neither of which are seen as necessarily destructive. But there is great tenderness too, a fondness for what grows between the cracks, especially those glimpses into the unadulterated world of childhood, before the knowledge or accumulation of loss, where everything is still at stake, and infinite, ‘the darkness under the cattle grid’.