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20 October 2011

TS Eliot prize shortlist announced

New collections from Carol Ann Duffy, Alice Oswald and John Burnside all nominated

By Sophie Elmhirst

The shortlist for the TS Eliot Prize for poetry was announced today. The judges, Gillian Clarke, Stephen Knight and Dennis O’Driscoll, chose six collections to accompany the four Poetry Book Society choices to make up the ten collections on the shortlist:

John Burnside, Black Cat Bone, Jonathan Cape
Carol Ann Duffy, The Bees, Picador
Leontia Flynn, Profit and Loss, Jonathan Cape
David Harsent, Night, Faber
John Kinsella, Armour, Picador
Esther Morgan, Grace, Bloodaxe
Daljit Nagra, Tippoo Sultan’s Incredible White-Man-Eating Tiger Toy-Machine!!!, Faber
Sean O’Brien, November, Picador
Bernard O’Donoghue, Farmer’s Cross, Faber
Alice Oswald, Memorial, Faber

In this week’s New Statesman, you can read a new, previously unpublished poem by John Burnside, who recently won the Forward Prize: Pink Footed Geese at Over Kellie. And click here to read Alice Oswald’s beautiful piece on the challenge of translating the Iliad.
Also: look out for new poems in coming weeks from David Harsent and John Kinsella…

 

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Pink Footed Geese at Over Kellie
by John Burnside

We know how far they have travelled
to be this event
in an otherwise motionless day;
the glare of descent
and the sound of them – not just

voices, but the funnelled
rowing of wingbeats,
tuned to the quick of our bones,
as we walk home over the bridge
by Knightsward Farm.

This is the closest we come
to wild, this living wave
of bodies, live
and blood-warm, at the chill point
of the year

when everything verges
on lull: the mind in its sleeve
of misgiving, and nothing sure
but frost and sky,
beneath this purposed joy.