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Description - The Asylum Dance by John Burnside

Lucid, tender, and strangely troubling, the poems in The Asylum Dance - which won the Whitbread Prize for Poetry in 2000 - are hymns to the tension between the sanctuary of home and the lure of escape. This is territory that Burnside has made his own- a domestic world threaded through with myth and longing, beyond which lies a no man's land - the 'somewhere in between' - of dusk or dawn, of mists or sudden light, where the epiphanies are.Using the framework of four long poems, 'Ports', 'Settlements', 'Fields' and 'Roads', the poet balances presence with absence; we are shown the homing instinct - felt in the blood and marrow - as a pull to refuge, simplicity, and a safe haven, while at the same time hearing the siren call from the world beyond- the thrilling expectancy of fairground or dancehall, the possibilities of the open road. With a confident open line and complete command of the language, John Burnside writes with grace, agility and profound philosophical purpose, confirming his position in the front rank of contemporary poetry.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780224090056
ISBN-10: 0224090054
Format: Paperback / softback
(198mm x 129mm x 9mm)
Pages: 96
Imprint: Yellow Jersey Press
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 3-Sep-2009
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - John Burnside

John Burnside has published seven works of fiction and eleven collections of poetry, including his Selected Poems, published by Cape in 2006. His memoir, A Lie About My Father, was published in the same year to enormous critical acclaim, and was chosen as the Scottish Arts Council Non-Fiction Book of the Year and the Saltire Society Scottish Book of the Year.

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