Electric Shadow

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Heidi Williamson's first collection is peopled with vibrant and disturbing shadows. The Northern Lights reach down beneath the London skyline, James Dean learns the craft of distance, Darwin staggers across a heaving ship, Coleridge slumbers on to another dream, and The Travelling Salesman turns a calculator on us. Fuelled by a residency at the London Science Museum's Dana Centre, Williamson's fascination with science leads her to explore less usual territories for poetry, including mathematics, chemistry, and computer programming, as well as space travel, electricity, and evolution. As she investigates the limits of personal and factual knowledge with 'eyes wide open', the driving force throughout is a desire to understand the 'astonishing state of possibilities' in the world around and inside us. Poetry Book Society Recommendation.