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Tilt by Jean Sprackland


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Winner of the Costa Poetry Award 2007.

Costa Book Awards 2007 Judges' comment:
"Taut, powerful poems which balance the anxieties of experience against the possibility of the miraculous."


Tilt by Jean Sprackland

Jean Sprackland’s third collection describes a world in free-fall. Chaos and calamity are at our shoulder, in the shape of fire and flood, ice-storm and hurricane; trains stand still, zoos are abandoned, migrating birds lose their way – all surfaces are unreliable, all territories unmapped.

These are poems that explore the ambivalence and dark unease of slippage and collapse, but they also carry a powerful sense of the miraculous made manifest amongst the ordinary: the mating of natterjack toads, ice on the beach (‘dream stuff, with its own internal acoustic’) or ‘the fund of life’ in a used contraceptive. Bracken may run wild across the planet ‘waiting for the moment/to pounce on the accident/of the discarded match’ but there are also the significant wonders of children and the natural beauty of the world they’ve inherited. Tilt is a collection of raw, distressed and beautiful poems, a hymn to the remarkable survival of things in the face of threat – for every degradation an epiphany, for every drowning a birth.

About the Author

Jean Sprackland's book Tattoos for Mothers Day was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best First Collection in 1999. Hard Water is her second collection.

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Book Info

Publication date

4th October 2007


Jean Sprackland

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Jonathan Cape Ltd an imprint of Vintage


64 pages


Literary Fiction
All Shortlists and Winners
eBook Favourites




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