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The Blue Hour
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2018 Reviews > The Blue Hour by Clare Crossman

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J.S. Watts | 411 comments Clare Crossman is a contemporary UK poet. The Blue Hour is her fourth collection of poetry and is a lyrical and haunting collection. The title of the collection refers to the time of dusk when colours are uncertain and take on a bluish tint. The theme of uncertainty, or of things in uncertain transition, permeates the collection making the world that Crossman describes both beautiful and fragile at the same time.

Crossman writes about people and the countryside, especially the area of South Cambridgeshire where she currently lives. Her landscapes are populated by those she knows, has known and lost:

"My mother is the one who haunts me most
and often sits in the wooden Irish chair.
Putting on a coat I think of her, the way she said
"This will see me out.' I understand that now,
the decades running low."


"Owls have come to sit in our fir trees:
they don't often leave the wood by the river,
I dislike their return.


Like omens, they have arrived
just as you are suddenly gone.
Dark eyed and serious, twenty and dead."

If life is uncertain, then even the landscape can be:

"One minute, long grass, the next chalk flat.
And it is as if nothing ever changes
and crossing is easy between banks.
Through the gate, forward and back
forward and back.

But this is the nature
of crossings, a leaving, a letting go
a threshold.

There were others here before."

It is a beautiful and thought provoking book.

message 2: by Jen (new)

Jen (jppoetryreader) | 1754 comments Mod
It does sound lovely. Thanks for this review.

message 3: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (sarahj) | 1722 comments Mod
I also like the language a lot. There is a perfume by Guerlain called L'Heure Bleu -- an evocative expression in French or English. Enjoyed your excerpts, especially the one with the mother - thanks for reviewing.

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