Cuckoo

“Nichola Deane’s rich and sensuous poems may open with a plainspoken line or a recognisable surface, but they dwell only briefly in the familiar actual. Her syntax and image-making – both equally bold – bring the world to us in new and compelling guises. These are poems of darkness and delight – alive to sensation and feeling, and open to the urgency of beauty.” Katharine Towers

“Nichola Deane’s imagination has a long reach that pulls the unexpected into line after line. The language, clear yet idiosyncratic, and Deane’s deft touch give these poems ease, lightness and confidence.” Fiona Moore

Cuckoo is very sensory and very spacious.

ISBN: 978-1-9165052-4-7
68 pages
R.R.P. £10.99

A sample poem from Cuckoo can be enjoyed below.

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Cuckoo (including P&P)

D Day

to my maternal grandmother, B.E.H., i.m.

i.

You tell them then because our planes are flying over everyone
and have been since dawn when the engines woke you

because their drone note, its guttural swarm
hums through your bones and the sky has invaded your ear

because even these friendly squadrons
seem to have you in their sights

because a plague of angels is over you
death-birds you will see with closed eyes

like eye-flaws or black wizened tears
years afterwards

because these Angels of Vitreous Dust
have shocked from you a blast-wave of grief, a Jericho

as you say out loud
to your parents’ tightening draining faces

all you can smuggle past your shame and your self
to reach the lips of the story

hoping they won’t do
what you know they’ll do when you tell them

(haven’t you already packed your valise
in the dawn-light–spare underthings wrapped round

your shrinking childhood, your foreboding?)
You tell them because you, more than many

know at seventeen what soldiers do
and because you don’t need a Bible to tell you

you and your small passenger
will both be half-Job, half-Eve in this world


ii.

Seven months of knowledge
hidden under ever-looser clothing

seven months of my mother
within you, my secret mother, my mother your

grief, my mother the love
no mother mothered when you could not keep her

until I kept the secret of her
for her safe within me, until

I woke to the sound
of the Lancasters, Spitfires and Mustangs

within her and dawn-until-midnight
mother-grief, like that longest of all days


REVIEWS

"[...] Nichola Deane’s work is sensory, vividly bringing alive her subjects. The idiosyncrasy is complementary and not whimsical. The poems wear their craft lightly and give the reader space to engage with and interpret them."

Emma Lee, full review here.

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