Against the Light sets a title-sequence resonant with an
affectionate awareness of the fragility and vulnerability
of our lives alongside a group of poems which conjure up
the distinctive moods and aspects of Edinburgh in winter.

[The opening winter sequence] meditates on the particular coldness of Edinburgh’s heart. Conn’s writing displays a wonderful sense of bathos that incorporates the grandeur of the scenery and the frivolousness of tourism... modern Edinburgh awash with holidaymakers.  In Against the Light – the superlative poem of the collection – the narrator watches his love throw away her painkillers... [while] poems like Charmed Lives, about the comic fall from grace of two collared doves, contain some wicked humour.
- Nick Major / The National


Slugs absolutely everywhere, our hostess tells us,
I don't know when there was a summer like it, 
the worst for years, particularly bad for my hostas,
you should see the damage they've done. My wife
says lucky we don't grow them any more. Curious
to know if that makes them hostages to fortune, I bite
back the pun and sip my gin, aware of scarcely any
in our garden. Lunch served, the conversation drifts on.

Waking the following night, from our back door
I survey the scene.  Dawn's first glimmer
reveals no hint of movement, even from our
resident flurry of finches. Then my eye traces
a trellis-work of trails criss-crossing the steps
and glistening on the stonework, like a multitude
of minuscule railway-tracks converging on some
evanescent junction, silvery in the moon's rays.



          Against the Light front cover
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Estuary, back cover