The powerful collection has now been shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry Prize for a First full Collection 2014.
Annette Skade’s poems are energised by a perspective that is ‘at once small as a wormhole / and wide as the curve of star-netted space.’
The language of these accomplished poems moves deftly, and often wittily, between the quotidian details of the physical world and metaphysical concerns as the poet Bernard O’Donoghue explains:
Annette Skade’s Thimblerig centres on the way the material reality of the world exists in a precarious but crucial balance with the tricks and the ‘sleight of hand’ that keep it in being. Generations of women ‘play out the old game’ of life by the same instinct that moves the salmon. These poems of sea and land, of birth and death, face the great issues; but they face them with a wit and matter-of-factness which recognize that, except for luck and chance, they might not have existed at all. The theme is absorbingly sustained throughout this brilliant book.
Remarkably, Skade continues to work as the principal of a rural national school in West Cork and she is also writing poems for a second collection.