Passing Through was John Tripp’s first collection of poems for six years. His many admirers will be pleased to find that he has lost none of his pithiness, or his characteristic style and rhythm.
His settings are wide-ranging, from expensive restaurants, market towns, historical sites, bland hotels and concrete universities to library reading rooms, the dole queue, the bus station in Bridgend and a pub in Great Portland Street. The main preoccupation of the book is the development of Wales in the ’eighties. It explores the replacement of the guiding values of the past by consumerism, mass production and the loss of faith, and questions their worth.
The results of this change - life seemingly lived without thought for the past or care for others - makes the poet regret that we seem to have lost the ability to pause as we pass through.