In this ambitious book of poems, Duncan Bush uses a glittering variety of voices and poetic personae. His characters include a South African ex-mercenary, a Welsh hill farmer’s widow, a Cardiff garage mechanic, tourists, and, most memorably in his long poem sequence for two voices, ’Are There Still Wolves In Pennsylvania’, a tragically disturbed American Vietnam War veteran and his wife.
Not only do these poems show a novelist’s flair for creating worlds rich in detail, they present us with characters who are wrestling, to varying degrees of success, with the compelling moral dilemmas of our day. The author’s darkly ironic precision in such poems as , ’A.I.D.S. (The Movie)’, ’Living in Real Times’ (a response to Bosnia), and ’After Chernobyl’ keep us riveted throughout the collection.