Winner of the Somerset Maugham Award 2006
Ideas of separation and divorce are important in Owen Sheers’ eagerly-awaited follow up to his acclaimed debut collection The Blue Book. The geographical divides of borders, the separation of the dead and the living, the movement from childhood to adulthood, the ending of relationships. Such divides are both moments of 'mark-making’ and moments of absence. In this collection it is often the awareness of such separation – past or impending – and the juxtaposition of these diverse states – that provides the friction from which the poems are born.
Skirrid Hill revolves around the two poems ‘Y Gaer’ and ‘The Hillfort’, the titles themselves suggesting the linguistic divide in Wales, from poems concerned with childhood, a Welsh landscape and family, to a more outward looking vision both geographically and historically.
“Sheers is a vivid, sensuous writer.” – The Times
“It is the truth in the details that suggests indisputably that Sheers is the real thing, a poet of promise whom we are sure to hear much of in the future.” – Dannie Abse
“Owen Sheers is one of the most exciting talents around and a fabulous performer of his work.” – Carol Ann Duffy