Return by Minor Road

Return by Minor Road

by Heidi Williamson


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In her mid-20s, Heidi Williamson was part of a Scottish community that suffered an inconceivable tragedy, the Dunblane Primary School shooting. Those years living in the town form the focus of her third poetry collection. Through rivers, rain, wildlife and landscape, Williamson revisits where ‘the occasional endures’ and discovers the healing properties of a beloved place that helped form her.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781780375229
Publisher: Bloodaxe Books
Publication date: 06/09/2020
Pages: 80
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.19(d)

About the Author

Born in Norfolk in 1971, Heidi Williamson has lived in Stirling, Brussels and Salisbury. She now lives in Wymondham, Norfolk. In 2008-09 she was poet-in-residence at the London Science Museum’s Dana Centre. She was writer-in-residence at the John Jarrold Printing Museum in Norwich in 2011-14. In 2008 she received an Arts Council award to complete her first collection, Electric Shadow (Bloodaxe Books, 2011), a Poetry Book Society Recommendation, which was shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry Prize. Her second collection, The Print Museum (Bloodaxe Books, 2016), won the poetry category of the 2016 East Anglian Book Awards. Her third collection, Return by Minor Road, is published by Bloodaxe in 2020. Her work has been used to inspire poetry and science discussions in schools and adult creative writing groups, and has featured in NHS waiting rooms, cafés, and at festivals.

Table of Contents

I What the river leaves behind

The wall 12

In a schoolroom, the woodcutter 13

Thrawn 14

Cormorant 16

Weir 17

Loch Occasional 18

What the river leaves behind 20

It's twenty-two years ago and it's today 21

Bracklinn Falls 22

Watching the past in the waters of Loch Earn 23

The rain in the night 24

Fugitive dust 25

Lepus timidus 26

Tharn 27

Hare 28

II Cold spring

From 30

Scottish spring 31

Monochrome 32

Cold spring I 33

Calls 37

After 38

Describe 39

Flowers 40

And 41

Dumyat 42

Balquhidder 43

Aubade 44

Sheriffmuir 45

Cold spring II 46

Elegy 49

Snowdrop 50

III The wild rain

When we were stone 52

Culvert 53

With a rootless lily held in front of him 54

Tonight my heart is open so hard it could shatter 56

Every day 57

Allan Water bridge 58

Facing north 60

Disappearance at six o'clock 61

Return by minor road 62

Dunblane 63

The weight of news 64

Historical markers 66

Wet morning in the cathedral square 67

A language learned abroad 68

The trees of the Trossachs 69

Self 70

Smoke 72

Dust, at intervals 73

The wild rain 74

Winter river 75

Place 76

Acknowledgements 79

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