Kelly Grovier

The Sleepwalker at Sea

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The poems in The Sleepwalker at Sea tread a fluid line between dream and wakefulness, memory and loss, presence and longing. Leave a house and it suddenly fills with 'the unseen'; consult 'The Book of Clues' and discover only 'ghostly hints' of a self you've left behind. Linked by their restless displacement, pacing haunted spaces, these are poems that question what it means to be in the world and seek answers in lost rooms, missing sketches, disappearing fragments. By turns meditative and playful, romantic and philosophical, The Sleepwalker at Sea strides an invisible path through streets of strangers, in search of ruined altars, buried candles, and 'the whispering galleries of the dead'. Here, deer 'dissolve / into a tapestry of mist', a butterfly 'measures / the universe's weight', and the soul 'sculpts itself in frostlit air'.
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25 printed pages
Original publication
2011

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