Personal heartbreak and public trauma are united in this haunting new collection from Seni Seneviratne. Her poems are both personal, enchanting lyrics of desire and political portrayals of life that has been marginalised, brutalised and lost.
Each poem here catches a sadness, sometimes with the twist of a knife. Yet the sudden twists of anger and tragedy are cradled in compassion, acceptance and transcendence, and the overall effect is both compelling and soothing. The Heart of It is a tender, moving collection, full of passionate intensity and an unswerving faith in the power of reconciliation and love.
“These tender, moving poems weave a delicate web.” – Jackie Kay
Seni Seneviratne was born and raised in Leeds, of English and Sri Lankan heritage. Her debut collection, Wild Cinnamon and Winter Skin, was published by Peepal Tree Press in 2007, and includes a poem which was Highly Commended by the judges in the Forward Poetry Prize. Her work was showcased in the groundbreaking Bloodaxe anthology Ten: New Poets from Spread the Word in 2010, championed by Carol Ann Duffy. Her poem ‘Operation Cast Lead’ was shortlisted in the 2010 Arvon International Poetry Competition. She has given readings, performances and workshops in the UK, the US, Canada, South Africa and Egypt.