REVIEWS Something of the surreal, something of the Dadaist, a despair at the state of things and a longing too, are among the impressions I got while reading Matt Duggan's 'The Kingdom'----which, correctly or incorrectly, I take to be a kind of dislocated metaphor for the state of the UK today. The elusive, the illusory, the missing or lost, the stolen, the decaying and death, all figure large, creating a sense of reluctant melancholy----reluctant because hope still manages to move like a zephyr through the poet's words. "Secrets hidden from ghost towns / where the dead stitch elastic patches / onto the foundations of half-broken homes;" Duggan writes, and in another poem, "Soon we will become / when time quickens / a selection of dead profiles." There's not much hope there, you could argue, but I assure you it's present, a word here, a phrase there, that serve to soften the melancholy and suggest to me that Duggan knows that without hope we are lost. Highly recommended. The Kingdom J.Goddard -AMAZON REVIEW

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