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The Spanish-Italian Border

by Róisín Tierney

The Spanish-Italian Border

Róisín Tierney won the prestigious Michael Marks Award in 2012 with her pamphlet Dream Endings, and in this, her first full-length collection, her distinctive poetic voice is once again given full rein.

As the title suggests, this is a book that contorts the world we know, oddly fluid and yet grounded in subjects that range from rural Ireland to sub-maritime journeys to Spain, from unheard of languages to ghost dogs. Wherever Tierney takes us she reveals desire, a search for connection with people and place, that if found isn't necessarily intense, or long-lasting. The playful tone of many of these poems dances lightly over careful construction and a crafted precision for what she describes. Through acute observations and litanies, there are echoes of song and chants that pull you innocently through to often shocking climaxes. However, never lost underneath all these poems is a genuine celebration of life and its peculiarities.

Róisín Tierney's subjects may be the dark ones of human vulnerability and anguish, but the poems... rest on solid and graceful foundations of precision, musicality and wit.

Alan Jenkins, in his presentation speech for the 2012 Michael Marks Award

978-1908376-35-0 (hbk)
978-1908376-34-3 (pbk)
Published March 2014