In this follow-up to her debut The Met Office Advises Caution, Rebecca Watts observes and tests the limits of humanity’s engagement with the non-human. By turns lyrical and narrative, the poems examine familiar subjects – environmental crisis, hawks, hospitals, the sea, barbecues, flowers, Emily Dickinson – only to find their subjects staring, sometimes fighting, back. Nature and nurture, equally red in tooth and claw, power a book-long sparring match between the overthinking poet and the ever-thoughtless universe, between the craft’s isolation and the world’s irrepressible variety. Gloves on and gloves off, the poet’s hands destroy and build, gather and scatter, caress and strike.
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