Ten Poems from Yorkshire
Selected and Introduced by Ian McMillan
Vikings, Romans, Normans. Grand industrial cities and national parks. Yorkshire encompasses so much that it probably takes poetry to do it justice. And who better to choose the poems than the ‘Bard of Barnsley’ Ian McMillan, who still lives in the Yorkshire town where he was born.
The poems travel the length, breadth and depth of the county, taking in weather (there’s more than enough rain), cricket and coal-mining, alongside barges on the Humber and the wild glories of the Dales. Everywhere there is the sense of a deep-rooted history in a county where:
“what you see is not
the whole story but the seam of something
precious gone underground, a darkly silver trail”
from ‘The 1984 Perspective’ by Maura Dooley
Yorkshire, it appears, is not only a place but a state of mind – and these poems demonstrate that invigorating fact in a rich variety of ways.
Cover illustration by James Green.