Falling Awake
Alice Oswald’s poems are always vivid and distinct, alert and deeply, physically, engaged in the natural world. Mutability – a sense that all matter is unstable in the face of mortality – is at the heart of this new collection and each poem is involved in that drama: the held tension that is embodied life, and life’s losing struggle with the gravity of nature.Working as before with an ear to the oral tradition, these poems attend to the organic shapes and sounds and momentum of the language as it’s spoken as well as how it’s thought: fresh, fluid and propulsive, but also fragmentary, repetitive. These are poems that are written to be read aloud.Orpheus and Tithonus appear at the beginning and end of this book, alive in an English landscape, stuck in the clockwork of their own speech, and the Hours – goddesses of the seasons and the natural apportioning of Time – are the presiding figures. The persistent conditions are flux and falling, and the lines are in constant motion: approaching, from daring new angles, our experience of being human, and coalescing into poems of simple, stunning beauty.

Falling Awake Details

TitleFalling Awake
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJul 7th, 2016
PublisherCape Poetry
ISBN-139781910702437
Rating
GenrePoetry, Environment, Nature

Falling Awake Review

  • Trish
    January 1, 1970
    I have a new favorite poet and and I can’t stop thinking about her work. But you have to hear her speak the work to get the full impact so therefore on my blog I have attached a video of Oswald reading the first poem in this 2016 collection, called "A Short Story on Falling."I have learned that this appears to be Oswald's ninth book of poetry, and that her second book, Dart, won the T.S. Eliot Prize in 2002. According to her wiki, Oswald "is a British poet from Reading, Berkshire. Her work won t I have a new favorite poet and and I can’t stop thinking about her work. But you have to hear her speak the work to get the full impact so therefore on my blog I have attached a video of Oswald reading the first poem in this 2016 collection, called "A Short Story on Falling."I have learned that this appears to be Oswald's ninth book of poetry, and that her second book, Dart, won the T.S. Eliot Prize in 2002. According to her wiki, Oswald "is a British poet from Reading, Berkshire. Her work won the T. S. Eliot Prize in 2002 and the Griffin Poetry Prize in 2017. In September 2017, she was named as BBC Radio 4's second Poet-in-Residence." It is absurd to fall in love with language again, but here I am, helpless in her hands.Her visualizations are unforgettable. In "You Must Never Sleep Under a Magnolia," we learn of "shriek-mouthed blooms" and the first flowering like a glimpse of flesh. And what of Old scrap-iron foxgloves rusty rods of the broken woodswhat a faded knocked-out stiffnessas if you'd sprung from the horse-hairof a whole Victorian sofa buried in the mud down there...--from Evening Poem Or what about "Tithonus: 46 Minutes in the Life of the Dawn" whose characterization of Tithonus reminds us of another babbling old man: It is said the dawn fell in love with Tithonusand asked Zeus to make him immortal, but forgotto ask that he should not grow old. Unable to die,he grew older and older until at last the dawnlocked him in a room where he still sits babblingto himself and waiting night after night for her appearance.As it happens, just when I discovered this unbeatable voice, I learn that she and another newly discovered favorite author, Kei Miller, will be speaking together, in a month, at the same venue in England, as part of the Bath Spa Poetry Series: It is enough to bring the dead to life. ♬♪ If I were a rich man ♬♫
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  • David Schaafsma
    January 1, 1970
    FliesAlice OswaldThis is the day the flies fall awake mid-sentenceand lie stunned on the windowsill shaking with speechesonly it isn’t speech it is trembling sections of puzzlement whichbreak off suddenly as if the questioner had been shotthis is one of those wordy dayswhen they drop from their winter quarters in the curtains and sizzle as they fallfeeling like old cigarette butts called back to lifeblown from the surface of some charred worldand somehow their wings which are little more than flak FliesAlice OswaldThis is the day the flies fall awake mid-sentenceand lie stunned on the windowsill shaking with speechesonly it isn’t speech it is trembling sections of puzzlement whichbreak off suddenly as if the questioner had been shotthis is one of those wordy dayswhen they drop from their winter quarters in the curtains and sizzle as they fallfeeling like old cigarette butts called back to lifeblown from the surface of some charred worldand somehow their wings which are little more than flakes of dead skinhave carried them to this blackened disembodied questionwhat dirt shall we visit today?what dirt shall we re-visit?they lift their faces to the past and walk about a bittrying out their broken thought-machinescoming back with their used-up wordsthere is such a horrible trapped buzzing wherever we flyit’s going to be impossible to think clearly now until next winterwhat should wewhat dirt should weThis book is about nature and observation and language. Accessible, oral-based. My friend Jenn showed me these two lines from the very beginning of the very first poem, “ A Short Story of Falling:”It is the story of the falling rainTo turn into a leaf and fall again.and I was hooked. Oswald is a classicist and likes music, too. There’s one long poem, “Tithonus: 46 Minutes in the Life of the Dawn”. A performance piece, with music. Sad. But I like best the pieces about dew, foxes, falling night. I needed it because I just read Bill McKibben's sad book Eaarth about our fast-declining natural world. This is my first experience with her poetry. I’ll read more.
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  • Emily B
    January 1, 1970
    Unfortunately not my kind of poetry, so I didn’t really enjoy this
  • Dannii Elle
    January 1, 1970
    I received this in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. Thank you to the author, Alice Oswald, and the publisher, Vintage Digital, for this opportunity.This collection of 24 poems are deeply rooted to the natural world and linked by the subject of mutability – a sense that all matter is unstable in the face of mortality.Whilst I did enjoy this collection, I don't think I engaged with it in the correct way. I read through each poem and, whilst appreciating them, they didn't exactly move I received this in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. Thank you to the author, Alice Oswald, and the publisher, Vintage Digital, for this opportunity.This collection of 24 poems are deeply rooted to the natural world and linked by the subject of mutability – a sense that all matter is unstable in the face of mortality.Whilst I did enjoy this collection, I don't think I engaged with it in the correct way. I read through each poem and, whilst appreciating them, they didn't exactly move me. I found certain stanzas or sections particularly beautiful but, overall, I was left feeling a little blase about the collection.Orality has always been a part of the lyric poetry tradition, going back to pre-literate times, and this collection was expressly created in keeping with the oral tradition of the classical world. Perhaps my enjoyment of this waned in my not doing so, in which case, I only have myself to blame. Reading this to myself I could decipher the lilting quality of tone and pace that would lend itself extraordinarily well to being read aloud. I don't really think, however, having done so would have vastly improved my experience of this.
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  • Simon
    January 1, 1970
    If I knew poetry better, or was more of a poetry buff, I would probably have given this four or five stars. As I am not and still learning it gets three which is high for me in this arena of literature. Alice writes beautifully about nature and the smaller miracles of life be it animal, human or mythical. For that I liked it very much. Sometimes I just didn't get the poems on the levels I felt I should. But that's me and not Alice.
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  • Ken
    January 1, 1970
    Favorites: "A Short Story of Falling," "Flies," "Looking Down." Oswald hits my sweet spot in that she has an affinity for nature poems. Here's an example:Flies (Alice Oswald)This is the day the flies fall awake mid-sentenceand lie stunned on the windowsill shaking with speechesonly it isn’t speech it is trembling sections of puzzlement whichbreak off suddenly as if the questioner had been shotthis is one of those wordy dayswhen they drop from their winter quarters in the curtains and sizzle as th Favorites: "A Short Story of Falling," "Flies," "Looking Down." Oswald hits my sweet spot in that she has an affinity for nature poems. Here's an example:Flies (Alice Oswald)This is the day the flies fall awake mid-sentenceand lie stunned on the windowsill shaking with speechesonly it isn’t speech it is trembling sections of puzzlement whichbreak off suddenly as if the questioner had been shotthis is one of those wordy dayswhen they drop from their winter quarters in the curtains and sizzle as they fallfeeling like old cigarette butts called back to lifeblown from the surface of some charred worldand somehow their wings which are little more than flakes of dead skinhave carried them to this blackened disembodied questionwhat dirt shall we visit today?what dirt shall we re-visit?they lift their faces to the past and walk about a bittrying out their broken thought-machinescoming back with their used-up wordsthere is such a horrible trapped buzzing wherever we flyit’s going to be impossible to think clearly now until next winterwhat should wewhat dirt should weVery cool, especially that cigarette butt-like sizzle being called back to life. We've all seen those mysterious flies do the Lazarus thing by the window.The downside is that I didn't enjoy as much Oswald's longer poems, especially one that took up half of this book, "Tithonus." It's never a good thing when your least favorite poem in a collection takes up half the book. But still. When there's some you really like, you just go back and reread those. That's how poetry collections give of themselves. Unlike with fiction, multiple readings (right after you read it) hold up like Billy the Kid.
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  • Lauren
    January 1, 1970
    Oswald is back on fine form again!Falling Awake, Alice Oswald's latest poetry collection is simply beautiful. She is an incredibly rare sort and has an ear for the musical in the everyday. I don't think I can really compare her with anyone else because she has a unique style of writing, of fitting different sounds together, of creating some of the most incredible imagery I have ever imagined, she is truly one of a kind. Having said that however, Falling Awake isn't my favourite poetry collection Oswald is back on fine form again!Falling Awake, Alice Oswald's latest poetry collection is simply beautiful. She is an incredibly rare sort and has an ear for the musical in the everyday. I don't think I can really compare her with anyone else because she has a unique style of writing, of fitting different sounds together, of creating some of the most incredible imagery I have ever imagined, she is truly one of a kind. Having said that however, Falling Awake isn't my favourite poetry collection by her; my favourite is either Woods, etc. or The Thing in the Gap Stone-Stile. Here, she literally sets my mind ablaze with her poetic word play. If you want to delve in to a different sort of poetry where there is magic, wonder and musicality in nature and the everyday, then look no further than Alice Oswald. She will take you by the hand and introduce you to new wonders of the world.
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  • Rebecca
    January 1, 1970
    Two great ones: “A Short Story of Falling” and “A Rushed Account of the Dew” (“I want to work out what it’s like to descend / out of the dawn’s mind // and find a leaf and fasten the known to the unknown / with a liquid cufflink”). One more good one: “Two Voices.” The rest? Opaque, forgettable, repetitive. And oh the pretentiousness of “Tithonus” (envisioned as a 46-minute performance)!
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  • Julie
    January 1, 1970
    7.0/10It may be I was distracted when I read this but I found the collection ... unexciting... overall. (But, if so easily distracted, then, it could be argued the poet wasn't speaking to me in the first place.) Still, she has some strong imagery in Swan, which is probably the best poem in here. A rotted swanis hurrying away from the plane-crash mess of her wings one here one theregetting panicky up out of her clothes and mid-splash looking down again at what a horrible plasticmould of herself s 7.0/10It may be I was distracted when I read this but I found the collection ... unexciting... overall. (But, if so easily distracted, then, it could be argued the poet wasn't speaking to me in the first place.) Still, she has some strong imagery in Swan, which is probably the best poem in here. A rotted swanis hurrying away from the plane-crash mess of her wings one here one theregetting panicky up out of her clothes and mid-splash looking down again at what a horrible plasticmould of herself split-secondclimbing out of her own cockpit ...(Excerpt only)Her poems on nature, and her shorter poems generally, have a certain lift and bite to them that give me an insight into a vital, vibrant spirit, but I found her faltering as she wrote her way through the myth of Tithonus. After a very promising start: It is said the dawn fell in love with Tithonusand asked Zeus to make him immortal, but forgotto ask that he should not grow old. Unable to die,he grew older and older until at last the dawnlocked him in a room where he still sits babblingto himself and waiting night after night for her appearance.the poem dwindles rather pointlessly until it just fades completely. Not enough blood on the apple for me.
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  • Philip Dodd
    January 1, 1970
    Falling Awake by Alice Oswald. So this is modern poetry, I thought, while reading it. This is what it is, now. I liked the book, enjoyed reading it. Though fresh, new, it did at times remind me of poems I had read before, mainly Four Quartets by T.S. Eliot, Wodwo by Ted Hughes. Every poet is influenced by those who have gone before, right back to the works of Homer, The Iliad and The Odyssey. Alice Oswald has found her voice, her own style, which is good. She lives in Devon, her biographical not Falling Awake by Alice Oswald. So this is modern poetry, I thought, while reading it. This is what it is, now. I liked the book, enjoyed reading it. Though fresh, new, it did at times remind me of poems I had read before, mainly Four Quartets by T.S. Eliot, Wodwo by Ted Hughes. Every poet is influenced by those who have gone before, right back to the works of Homer, The Iliad and The Odyssey. Alice Oswald has found her voice, her own style, which is good. She lives in Devon, her biographical note tells us. That did not surprise me, as her poems are rooted in life in the English countryside, the village, hedges, lanes, fields, woods, ponds and rivers. Her roots are rural not urban. I liked the eerie feel of her poem, Village, which reminds us that life in a country village is not entirely wholesome and pleasant, the deeper you go the darker it can become. I was curious, I wanted to know why her book and her previous books had won literary awards, and had won praise from literary critics, and what a living poet writes like, now. I was glad that I bought the book. That it was Shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize and the Costa Poetry Award 2016 impressed me. I wanted to know why it had received such praise and prizes. Learn from the masters. That is my motto. Alice Oswald has mastered her art, I think. None of the masters, old and new, learned the craft of writing poetry from academic tutors, but only from each other, from reading those works that took to their liking. Falling Awake by Alice Oswald is a good book to read by anyone interested in finely written poetry.
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  • Eric Anderson
    January 1, 1970
    very time I read a book of poetry I wonder why I don’t read more poetry. I was prompted to read this collection after it won the poetry category of the Costa Book Awards and I’m so glad I picked it up. The title “Falling Awake” feels apt as Alice Oswald has a dizzying way of turning the world upside down, making it fresh and inverting expectation with her stunningly beautiful acrobatic language. Many of the poems in this collection focus on nature whether that includes animals, insects, the weat very time I read a book of poetry I wonder why I don’t read more poetry. I was prompted to read this collection after it won the poetry category of the Costa Book Awards and I’m so glad I picked it up. The title “Falling Awake” feels apt as Alice Oswald has a dizzying way of turning the world upside down, making it fresh and inverting expectation with her stunningly beautiful acrobatic language. Many of the poems in this collection focus on nature whether that includes animals, insects, the weather, the setting/rising sun or the transformation of the seasons. A few draw in references to figures from Greek mythology such as Orpheus and Tithonus. Their inclusion melds with the tone of the other poems giving a striking perspective on time’s movement and how we perceive the world as it flows around us.Read my full review of Falling Awake by Alice Oswald on LonesomeReader
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  • Nick Spencer
    January 1, 1970
    although not unable to turn a decent phrase someone should tell alice oswald thatthereismoretowritinggoodpoetry than pissing about with the spacebar and refusing to use punctuation or thecaps key
  • Del
    January 1, 1970
    i tend to be a little dense when it comes to modern poetry, having only studied ancient poetry and a little bit of french poetry. but this collection made me think that modern poetry might just be the thing for me.i was already charmed after the first poem, and it only got better from there. it read like greek lyrical poetry, and reminded me of my favourite poets.not only will i be rereading this one, but i'm going to be reading as much oswald as i can.
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  • Kirsty
    January 1, 1970
    Alice Oswald's Falling Awake has one of the most beautiful blurbs which I have ever read; even had I not been familiar with her poetry or output beforehand, it would definitely have enticed me to pick this particular tome up. I very much enjoyed Dart when I read it a couple of years ago, and have been eager to read more of Oswald's ever since. The imagery which she creates throughout Falling Awake is nothing short of beautiful, and her use of mythology is strong and fitting. The themes of nature Alice Oswald's Falling Awake has one of the most beautiful blurbs which I have ever read; even had I not been familiar with her poetry or output beforehand, it would definitely have enticed me to pick this particular tome up. I very much enjoyed Dart when I read it a couple of years ago, and have been eager to read more of Oswald's ever since. The imagery which she creates throughout Falling Awake is nothing short of beautiful, and her use of mythology is strong and fitting. The themes of nature and mutability tie the whole together wonderfully. Oswald's repetitions are splendidly handled, and there is not a single poem here which falls short of being meaningful or memorable. Falling Awake is a fluid poetry collection, which I would heartily recommend to any fans of poetry.
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  • Esther
    January 1, 1970
    Raved about in England, one of the finest contemporary poets etc. So I picked up this collection whilst on my Brit travels last summer. Left me a bit cold to be honest. Plenty to admire in the craft, but nothing really clicked with me. I kept re-reading poems again and again, before admitting this was obviously just not my bag.
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  • Fran
    January 1, 1970
    A friend recommended this book and I watched Alice Oswald reciting/reading from this book. She is impressive and deeply committed and I fell towards her poetry. It is a big gulp of apprehension that I start reading poetry with, but I went ahead. I admire her feeling with words, her love for the natural world. I will read more of her work.
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  • Rick
    January 1, 1970
    This is a collection to read and read and read. Put it in your pocket and take it with you. Read it end to end. Read a poem here and there. Just grab a phrase for the morning and tattoo it on your brain, sew it into your soul, color it onto your heart, inside and outside the lines: “when the tree begins to flowerlike a glimpse offleshwhen the flower begins to smellas if its roots have reachedthe layer ofThirst upon theunsealed jar ofJoy” begins the poem “You Must Never Sleep Under a Magnolia.” I This is a collection to read and read and read. Put it in your pocket and take it with you. Read it end to end. Read a poem here and there. Just grab a phrase for the morning and tattoo it on your brain, sew it into your soul, color it onto your heart, inside and outside the lines: “when the tree begins to flowerlike a glimpse offleshwhen the flower begins to smellas if its roots have reachedthe layer ofThirst upon theunsealed jar ofJoy” begins the poem “You Must Never Sleep Under a Magnolia.” It continues, perhaps with the voice of a parent’s reprimand, to its end: “Alice, you shouldnever sleep underso much pure paleso many shriek-mouthed bloomsas if Patiencehad run out ofPatience.” The first half of the book is forest stream of poems where the theme of falling as a physical act, a metaphoric act, and a metaphysical act is explored. The first poem is “A Short Story of Falling,” a poem with rhymed couplets, tracing the journey of a raindrop from sky to flower—‘then I might know like water how to balance / the weight of hope against the light of patience.” Sometimes it is the perspective that falls (“Vertigo” and “Looking Down”). Sometimes (“Two Voices”) it is light and shadow.Nature is present, vibrant, in all these poems, even as a vehicle for myth, as in the story of Orpheus’s journey down a river. “there comes a tremor and there comes a pausedown there in the underworldwhere the tired stones have fallenand the sand in a trance lifts a little it is always midnight in those pools.”It is not exactly Orpheus who makes this journey, only his head, following his death at the hands of the Maenads. Mortality and immortality are linked to this theme of falling: raindrops that run their course but are reabsorbed into sunlight, mammals that feed the soil, and therefore life, at their journey’s end. Oswald’s talent and her rigorously, beautifully applied skill makes poems of observation, narrative poems, and poems of life and death small miracles of unexpected joy. They do this even when they are acknowledging our mortality, our proper place in nature’s fathomless movement from life to death and endlessly on. They do this even when presenting the mournful world seen by a 5000 year old man, condemned to never die while endlessly aging, in response to a god’s rash wish of love. At the end of his bittersweet cataloging of dawn’s arrival, Tithonous asks, “may I stop please” The poem, fully titled “Tithonus, 46 Minutes in the Life of Dawn”, ends with its own question, “what is the word for somethingfashioned in the quick of hearingbut never quitebut never quite appearing.” Oswald’s accomplishment (here and with Dart and Memorial and more in her already formidable career) is a wonder because there is so much imagination, so much skill and command, and so little sense of artifice. You read her and feel that this is exactly how to say this, to describe that, to capture this dilemma and voice awe in the moment and its brevity.
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  • Emma Holtrust
    January 1, 1970
    Before I start this review, I want to highlight my absolute lack of poetry knowledge. Since I've never really read any poetry, besides the mandatory poems a English literature student has to read, I had no clue where to start finding poetry to read. And then I discovered that Falling Awake by Alice Oswald has won the poetry section of the Costa Book Awards and figured that was a good enough reason to start with that collection. Falling Awake isn't an easy poetry collection to read. Its premise i Before I start this review, I want to highlight my absolute lack of poetry knowledge. Since I've never really read any poetry, besides the mandatory poems a English literature student has to read, I had no clue where to start finding poetry to read. And then I discovered that Falling Awake by Alice Oswald has won the poetry section of the Costa Book Awards and figured that was a good enough reason to start with that collection. Falling Awake isn't an easy poetry collection to read. Its premise is based on Greek mythology, which I actually found a comfort because I am very interested and have learned quite a bit about mythology. The collection consists of two parts and I must say that I found the second part a lot easier to understand than the first one.The key with Falling Awake, for me at least, was to really take my time to read and re-read and think about what exactly I read. This is probably true for a lot of poetry, which is supposed to pack a lot in a small package, but it wasn't really my thing. The second part of the collection was enjoyable and easy enough to understand that one, very focused, read was enough for me, but the first part was just exhausting.While I think this is probably due to my inexperience, Falling Awake was only half enjoyable for me. However, I'm excited to pick it back up in a few weeks and see if some thinking and time has changed my mind about the collection and my understanding of it.
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  • Julia V
    January 1, 1970
    I honestly wanted to like this collection a lot more than I did. This was my first venture into Oswald's writing and possibly not the best choice. The first half of the book is a collection of poems that all seem to follow a similar vein. Her writing involves a lot of lovely word choices and emphasis is mainly achieved through repetition.While I liked certain aspects of the writing it never really grabbed me in. My favorite poem was Fox.The second half of the book was devoted to a single lengthy I honestly wanted to like this collection a lot more than I did. This was my first venture into Oswald's writing and possibly not the best choice. The first half of the book is a collection of poems that all seem to follow a similar vein. Her writing involves a lot of lovely word choices and emphasis is mainly achieved through repetition.While I liked certain aspects of the writing it never really grabbed me in. My favorite poem was Fox.The second half of the book was devoted to a single lengthy poem titled Tithonus. The overall concept of this poem was nice but it kind of felt clunky compared to the rest of the collection. I wouldn't recommend this book to someone but I also do not regret reading it.
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  • Kate
    January 1, 1970
    This is stunning! I did as the inside flap advised and I read the poems out loud and oh yes, do it! Some come to life, they shine so much more, even though they are still beautiful read silently, some sparkle when said aloud. What I love about Alice Oswald's work is that even if I don't fully understand it, I still love it. I can still get something from it. 'Dunt' was far away my favourite, and that is one that takes on another life when said aloud. How many times have I said "aloud"? It doesn' This is stunning! I did as the inside flap advised and I read the poems out loud and oh yes, do it! Some come to life, they shine so much more, even though they are still beautiful read silently, some sparkle when said aloud. What I love about Alice Oswald's work is that even if I don't fully understand it, I still love it. I can still get something from it. 'Dunt' was far away my favourite, and that is one that takes on another life when said aloud. How many times have I said "aloud"? It doesn't matter so much HOW you read this collection, just read it.....please.
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  • Callum McAllister
    January 1, 1970
    One of those collections that's very satisfying in that it pays close attention to the exact representation of its subject, but I'm not sure I got more from it than that (not that there needs to be anything more). Would say it's following on from Ted Hughes' style in a vivid portrait of natural landscapes.
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  • mwpm
    January 1, 1970
    It is the story of the falling rainto turn into a leaf and fall againit is the secret of a summer showerto steal the light and hide it in a flowerand every flower a tiny tribunalthat from the ground flows green and momentaryis one of water's wishes and this talehangs in a seed-head smaller than my thumbnailif only I a passerby could passas clear as water through a plume of grassto find the sunlight hidden at the tipturning to seed a kind of lifting rain dripthen I might know like water how to ba It is the story of the falling rainto turn into a leaf and fall againit is the secret of a summer showerto steal the light and hide it in a flowerand every flower a tiny tribunalthat from the ground flows green and momentaryis one of water's wishes and this talehangs in a seed-head smaller than my thumbnailif only I a passerby could passas clear as water through a plume of grassto find the sunlight hidden at the tipturning to seed a kind of lifting rain dripthen I might know like water how to balance the weight of hope against the light of patiencewater which is so raw so earthy-strongand lurks in cast-iron tanks and leaks alongdrawn under gravity toward my tongueto cool and fill the pipe-work of this songwhich is the story of the falling rainthat rises to the light and falls again- A Short Story of Falling, pg. 1* * *Amphibious vaguenessneither pool nor landunder whose velvetthree rivers spring to their tasksin whose indecent hillstired of my voiceI followed the advice of waterknelt and put my mouthto a socket in the grassas if to an outlet of my ownunveiled stonelinessand sleepless flightthey say the herons used to hanglike lamps here giving off gloomnow walkers floaton the wings of their macsto this weepholewhere you can tastealmostnot water exactly- A Drink from Cranmere Pool, pg. 28* * *when the tree begins to flowerlike a glimpse ofFleshwhen the flower begins to smellas if its roots have reachedthe layer ofThirst upon theunsealed jar ofJoyAlice, you shouldnever sleep underso much pure paleso manky shriek-mouthed bloomsas if Patiencehad run out ofPatience- You Must Never Sleep Under a Magnolia, pg. 38
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  • Hayley Lowman
    January 1, 1970
    It's hard reviewing poetry as it's so subjective. I just didn't enjoy it, or feel anything from it. There is no doubt that the author is talented though, and this book speaks to many people.I went to university next to the river Dart, so I think I was hoping to read words that rekindled a magic nostalgia of that time for me, but it didn't, as I did with her previous book "dart". This is no reflection of the writer, obviously, just my own expectations. I always review in the sense of how a book h It's hard reviewing poetry as it's so subjective. I just didn't enjoy it, or feel anything from it. There is no doubt that the author is talented though, and this book speaks to many people.I went to university next to the river Dart, so I think I was hoping to read words that rekindled a magic nostalgia of that time for me, but it didn't, as I did with her previous book "dart". This is no reflection of the writer, obviously, just my own expectations. I always review in the sense of how a book has moved, intrigued or changed me. Or if I've learned a lot from it- more than it being "good" or "bad" literature.
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  • Sarah Hobbs
    January 1, 1970
    Falling Awake was shortlisted for the 2016 Forward Prize for Poetry - and I can now see exactly why.This collection of poetry has everything that you would want from a classic collection of poetry and verse. Click here to read my full review of this book...
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  • Rosa
    January 1, 1970
    beautifully crafted, obviously, but just not my thing topic-wisemy favourite poem from this collection is definitely "A Rushed Account of the Dew"
  • Lulufrances
    January 1, 1970
    Such sophisticated writing and very enjoyable. Due to the topics I think some things were lost on me and others went over my head.
  • Jacqueline Valencia
    January 1, 1970
    I saw her read "Swan" at the Griffin shortlisted poetry readings and cried and sobbed. Such a beautiful reading and poem. Her work is astounding. She quickly became an inspiration and a favourite.
  • Paul
    January 1, 1970
    I don’t read much poetry, but I had heard very good things about Falling Awake by Alice Oswald and as I had really enjoyed Dart by her I’d though that I’d give it a go. This collection is split into two parts, the first is individual poems, and the second half is titled Tithonus. Like Dart, this is deeply embedded in the natural world, and has the same haunting beauty. This is one of those wordy daysThere are a few poems and lines that stood out:A Short Story of Falling: “It is the secret of a s I don’t read much poetry, but I had heard very good things about Falling Awake by Alice Oswald and as I had really enjoyed Dart by her I’d though that I’d give it a go. This collection is split into two parts, the first is individual poems, and the second half is titled Tithonus. Like Dart, this is deeply embedded in the natural world, and has the same haunting beauty. This is one of those wordy daysThere are a few poems and lines that stood out:A Short Story of Falling: “It is the secret of a summer shower / to steal the light and hide it in a flower”Fox: “My life / is laid beneath my children / like gold leaf”Shadow: It is faint / it has been falling for a long timeSunday Ballard: As they dressed the dust / flew white and silent through the house”I really liked the collection in the first half of the book, but couldn’t get on with the poem that took up the second. Will still read more of her work though.
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  • Alex Watson
    January 1, 1970
    It really is very beautiful poetry, and useful too, in that its new ways of looking are right there for the taking. Take this, about dawn, sleeplessness and longing: 4:22 the village is lost in its veilsa few dreams lean over the lanes likenettles here come cascades of earliness inwhich everything is asked is it lightis it light is it light the horizon making only muffledanswers but moisture on leaves isquick to throw glances and bodiless black lace woods in which one to another a songbird asks It really is very beautiful poetry, and useful too, in that its new ways of looking are right there for the taking. Take this, about dawn, sleeplessness and longing: 4:22 the village is lost in its veilsa few dreams lean over the lanes likenettles here come cascades of earliness inwhich everything is asked is it lightis it light is it light the horizon making only muffledanswers but moisture on leaves isquick to throw glances and bodiless black lace woods in which one to another a songbird asks is it light is it lightnot quite
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  • Karen Mace
    January 1, 1970
    I read very little poetry so am trying my best this year to engage in the subject more! And if this collection is anything to go by, then I'm in for a wonderful year ahead!This is a collection of beautifully written and wonderfully observed poems about nature and the british landscape. The attention to detail is stunning and I found myself re-reading quite a few to enjoy them more. They are also beautifully displayed on the page which adds an extra layer to the enjoyment of reading them.
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