The bare flesh of a 1951 boxing match, luminous shirts in a country lane, surreal urban attire and the scales of a dying fish illuminate the volume with suits of light. This collection doesn't shy away from the disturbing and violent: plague pits on the Piccadilly line, a landscape illuminated by atomic afterblast, an aria sung to the accompaniment of artillery fire.
And yet these poems also celebrate precious interrelations: inscriptions of love on an effigy, charged mementos, the delicate breaking of ice. Irony and play give edge to the vision. The volume contains a number of sequences, including 'Kilvert', which responds in a pared-down voice to some unnerving entries in the famous Victorian diary; the experimental 'Aerial', the result of a Cessna flight above ancient ground; and 'Ideal City', a series of letters to a visionary architect.
Damian Walford Davies was born in 1971. He teaches in the Department of English and Creative Writing at Aberystwyth University. He has written extensively on Romanticism, and has edited a book of essays on R.S. Thomas and the Selected Poems of William Wordsworth. A co-authored collection of poetry, Whiteout, appeared in 2006.