Carcanet Press
Quote of the Day
It is impossible to imagine literary life in Britain without Carcanet.
William Boyd

Missel-Child

Helen Tookey

Cover of Missel-Child by Helen Tookey
RRP: GBP£ 9.95
Discount: 10%
You Save: GBP£ 0.99

Price: GBP£ 8.96
Available Add to basket
Paperback
ISBN: 978 1 847772 18 3
Categories: 21st Century, British, First Collections, Women
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Published: January 2014
211 x 140 x 8 mm
80 pages
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Also available in: eBook (Kindle), eBook (EPUB)
  • Description
  • Excerpt
  • Author
  • Contents
  • Missel-Child

    The lady of the moon is in travail,
    her white face waxen as the missel-fruit.

    The gravelled path gives way to broken angles,
    burials of water. Follow it.

    Creep into the hospice of the yew,
    its pale lying-place. Curl up there. Wait.
     Shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry Prize for First Full Collection 2015

    According to the seventeenth-century herbarium The Garden of Eden, a ‘missel-child’ is a mysterious being found beneath a mistletoe-covered tree – a changeling, perhaps, ‘whereof many strange things are conceived’. Helen Tookey’s first full collection of poems starts from the missel-child to explore archaeologies of identity, place and language. She is a formally inventive writer, using collage and syllabics, exploring elegy and myth. The poems in this book create a space in which language enables something to be said and also to be shown.



    Her quiet, precise poems have a genuine eeriness. She has interests in both archaeology and psychology, but knows intuitively that they aren’t separate – that when we dig up the past it’s our own roots we are looking at.
    Grevel Lindop

    The diction is unexpected, apt and deeply satisfying, focusing the reader not only on the words chosen, but also on the ghosts and resonances of those that might have been there.
    Carola Luther

    Missel-Child is an exceptional volume. Some of the subject-matter is ‘found’, some comes from a powerful and intelligent imagination and from keen observation. All is embodied in a language that is sensuous and strong.
    Jeffrey Wainwright
    I

    Then is it true 
    At Burscough, Lancashire 
    Prints 
    Estuarine 
    Shavuot 
    Cockleshells 
    Poem for Sabine 
    Magnolia 
    Among Alphabets 
    Fox-Seers 
    Autumn Child 

    II

    Missel-Child 
    Unadopted 
    Funeral and Fox 
    At the Castle 
    Water, its Voicings 
    Katherine 
    In a Richer Mine 
    Shilling Visit 
    Cedar 
    Among the Gods (Persephone) 

    III

    Male Nude by R.B. Kitaj 
    Mono 
    Portrait of a Young Woman 
    With Joe on Silver Street
    Der Tod in Venedig 
    The Hardened Criminals of Tomorrow 
    When I was quite small I would sometimes dream 
    Miss Yamada Has Gotten Married 
    America 
    A long war, and now the returning 

    IV

    Fosse Way 
    Hollow Meadows 
    Persephone in Adiyaman 
    Philadelphus 
    Rheidol Valley 
    Priest 
    Heron 
    In the dying days of the year we walked 
    Secret Name 
    Climbing the Hill at Sunset 

    Notes 
    Helen Tookey was born near Leicester in 1969. She studied philosophy and literature at university and currently teaches Creative Writing at Liverpool John Moores University. Her short collection Telling the Fractures , a collaboration with photographer Alan Ward, was published by Axis Projects in 2008. Her verse was anthologised in New ... read more
You might also be interested in:
Share this...
The Carcanet Blog My Migration Story by Karen McCarthy Woolf read more 'Definitive true art' by Hkan Sandell read more Trump Revisited read more 'The coolest library in the world': Graves books donated to new Dei library read more Improvising Shakespeare: My Father as ''Not a Detail Man'' and New Meddling with the Sonnet by Richard Price read more Shakespeare's Sonnets: the outtakes read more
Arts Council Logo
We thank the Arts Council England for their support and assistance in this interactive Project.
This website ©2000-2016 Carcanet Press Ltd