Sheenagh Pugh’s poems continue to entertain and delight her many admirers. In Stonelight, her ninth collection, the keynote is celebration.
The opening section includes a moving series called ’Arctic Chart’ which commemorates the various people (and one ship) who gave their names to features on the Arctic map. Also here is ’Envying Owen Beattie’ (winner of the Forward Prize for Best Poem of 1998), where the discovery of a frozen explorer under permafrost inspires some unusual thoughts.
The middle section, including ’The Faithful Wife’, makes up a sequence of persona poems in the character of a middle-aged woman in love with a young man.
Other poems deal with what Sheenagh Pugh calls "the usual suspects: Shetland, Cardiff, mortality, slightly weird and misplaced people." There are also more of the poet’s fine translations from the French and German.