Her intense response to the landscape of Powys combines with a constant curiosity about the inhabitants of the place, their histories and personalities. Yet far from being merely 'local' these poems transcend circumstance to embody universal spiritual values.
There are many fine shorter lyrics such as 'Starlings', 'Dancers' and 'Bluetit Feeding'. There are fascinating portraits where living or historical figures come to life, such as the formidable grandmother in 'Sian Fach' and poems that detail adventures and journeys like 'Up to the Twdin'. The longer works of several sections here, 'Six Houses', 'Land' and 'Into the Dark' allow the author a larger canvas for her reflections and reveal a new breadth and ambition for this widely admired poet.
Ruth Bidgood was born in Blaendulais, near Neath, educated at Oxford, and worked as a coder in Alexandria, Egypt in World War Two. She has lived in mid-Wales since the mid-sixties. The author of several prize-winning volumes of poetry, she also writes local history.