While any artist likes to feel in control of their work, it’s ultimately the reader who, in dialogue with the poems, discovers what they’ve become. I’ve been fortunate with The Catch. The private reaction has been overwhelming… I’ve been so moved. Meanwhile, public feedback is turning up many fascinatingly different ‘readings’. In his interview for The Literatur, Patrick Davidson Roberts identifies the way that this book keeps coming back to ideas of ‘light’ and ‘morning’, as opposed – if that word isn’t too emphatic – to the dark thread that runs through Coleshill. Declan Ryan, in Ambit, sees this too, and also a ‘necessary, sobering grief which runs mostly invisible underneath its hymns and songs’ – I like that implication, the understanding that it’s hard won. Finally, Omar Sabbagh, in Agenda, enters into a dialogue with the idea of empathy and the way we are all caught in the dance and music of being – ‘the catch’ if you will.
It is terrific to have three leading young poets and poet-critics engage with The Catch so thoughtfully and generously. In British poetry we have, at last, a new generation prepared to engage with poetry at an unashamedly serious, passionate critical level, and it’s inspiring and exciting to see. I hope it means our future is now assured! It’s also terrific to meet with such answering enthusiasm, and to be engaged in this new dialogue.
To read the reviews and the interview click below.