The T.S. Eliot Prize for a single collection is one of the most popular, prestigious, and increasingly transatlantic poetry prizes in Britain. In preparation for the shortlist reading at the Royal Festival Hall, where thousands of poetry lovers including me will shortly descend with excitement, here is an overview of this year's 10 contenders.
'Now where?' asks the speaker in 'Three Glances at a Field of Poppies', the opening poem in Deryn Rees-Jones' new collection, Burying the Wren. This question can be asked with an emphasis on either word: 'Now where?' or 'Now where?' In either case, there is a sense of distance already travelled and a fear of being lost. There is none of the breezy continuity with which one may ask, 'Where now?'