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Books Editorial

juliapoems.jpg The Collected Poems of Julia Darling

Edited by Bev Robinson, Arc Publications, £11.99

‘we all matter, we are all / indelible, miraculous, here’ runs the final couplet in Julia Darling’s Indelible, Miraculous; and even though she died 10 years ago, she is undeniably still here - quite stupidly and gloriously so - through the body of work that she has left behind including her poetry which has been collected together here. She was born in Winchester, but from 1980 onwards made her home in Newcastle, and local sights and sounds inform her work from Newcastle is Lesbos to A Short Manifesto For My City to the beautifully poignant Rendezvous Café: Whitley Bay (“Rendezvous with the sea / and the sugary breeze. / Come eat strawberry flan / while we can, while we can.”). Latterly, she went through the trauma of breast cancer, and consequently hospitals, care and sundry treatments became a feature of her work, but such poems still retain an unsentimental joie de vivre that speak to us a universal truth which is, indeed, that we all matter.