Early Train
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Early Train


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Jonathan Davidson has a loving, observant and wry regard for the frailties of the human condition. He makes fresh something we thought we knew; writing of the everyday the way Vermeer might be said to paint it.’ — Maura Dooley

‘These are thoughtful, lucid, deceptively simple poems; but their eye is clear and their approach graceful. Sometimes concealing a darker melancholy, they find truths in the prosaic details of our lives – such as bike frames and Sunday papers in the garden.’ — Stuart Maconie

‘Distant and yet close, intimate and yet somehow objective, the quiet power of these tender and true poems pulls you in. Davidson is as interested in the haunting strangeness of nostalgia as he is in the oddly humanising effect of the mundane. And he often finds in the ordinary something joyous and surprising. This is a remarkable collection.’ — Jackie Kay

'These poems are carefully crafted, even artful, almost exquisite at times in the ways they precisely deploy the language of the everyday and images of ordinariness. Davidson documents the personal importance of everyday things in such a way that what might be thought trivial is discovered to be essential, and what might be ignored as commonplace finds it own voice.' — Noel Williams, Orbis

'Through unobtrusive deftness, we glimpse lives of fellow travellers, such as his father, salvaging roadkill ‘wrapped in The Morning Star / saddle-bagged’. Davidson, noting ‘dark-eyed sloes’, or shopkeepers’ ‘print-stained fingers’, has an eye for detail as keen as any travelling detective’s. He is equally skilled at recapturing forgotten intensities of childhood, ‘water like fire, freezing’, and the hungry flow of a cyclist’s teashop talk... Progress through the quiet riches – and profound surprises – of Early Train is time well spent.' — Poetry London

'...a poetry that surprises, that shows craft and judgement and dexterity, and deploys sudden poignancies, charges of sadness' Stride Magazine


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