WINNER OF THE 2006 FORWARD PRIZE
In Scots, the verb 'swither' has two meanings: to be doubtful, to waver, to be in two minds; and to appear in shifting forms - indeterminate and volatile. From disarmingly direct poems about the end of childhood to erotically charged lyrics about the ends of desire, Robertson's powerful third collection is stalked and haunted by both senses. Hard-edged, pitch-perfect, effortlessly various, Swithering is a book of brave and black romance, locating its voice in that space where great change is an ever-present possibility.
Swithering has just won the Forward Prize for Best Collection and is also shortlisted for this year's T.S. Eliot Prize.
Robin Robertson is from the north-east coast of Scotland. A Painted Field won a number of awards, including the 1997 Forward Prize for Best First Collection and the Saltire Scottish First Book of the Year Award. His second collection, Slow Air, was published in 2002 and he recently received the E.M. Forster Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.