Throughout, a lively and enquiring mind is brought to bear on how we live and die, and how we might live more equitably. Sheenagh Pugh approaches her subject unpredictably, through Norse saga and snooker, apartheid and falling tortoises, in a poetry of invention and conviction.
At the heart of the book is the Earth Studies sequence, "a history of the world in 19 poems", and the first major environmental poem of the "green" era. Set in the indeterminate future, it explores the rise of human civilisation, and abuse of the Earth, following them to their logical conclusion: the death of the planet. Ironic, lyrical, penetrating , these poems typify the craft and passion of Sheenagh Pugh's writing.
Selected Poems ends with a section of Pugh's much-admired translations, of German poets such as Simon Dach, Andreas Gryphius and Christian Hofmann von Hofmanswaldau.
Sheenagh Pugh is known to thousands of poetry readers for 'Sometimes', her much anthologised 'poem on the underground' and for her Selected Poems, a set text in schools. She currently lectures in Creative Writing at the University of Glamorgan, and has won numerous prizes for her work, including the Babel Prize for translation and the ACW Book of the Year in 2000.