"Lapstrake is about the sea and what the sea keeps for herself. There is a hollowed out place in the Clinker-built boat of the body, where a baby rocked as she slept and she sleeps. Wendy Pratt has found a shape for grief in these poems. They will remain with me for a long time. "
"Like the method of boat building it refers to, Lapstrake is a pamphlet where everything is connected. Norse mythology overlaps with the contemporary, raw grief for a lost daughter blends with the seascape. The poems function as an echo chamber, reverberating long after the book closes. Wendy Pratt has a gift for reining in the most vivid images into taut forms, amplifying rather than diminishing their power through her restraint. You too will be caught by this book, this poet."
"Early on in Lapstrake we find Pratt 'shipwrecked on the bed' before the loss of her newborn baby. The poems that follow are visceral, raw and exquisitely composed. Each poem comes with its freight of sadness, a freight that pulls us under, but not to drown us, instead to dazzle us, as we meet sea gods, dolphins and mermaids. In this underwater world, Pratt has created a new language for grief. I wanted to swim in its words over and over."
"There is nothing ordinary or common-place in these poems - they are full of surprises in their use of language and imagery. The sequence 'And her Great Gift of Sleep' exploring the death of a child is both compelling and heart-breaking in its unfolding of the slow process of grieving. These are subtle and necessary poems, mapping out the difficult business of moving on from trauma through a connection to the ocean and the creatures, both real and mythical that inhabit it."
£5.50 (including postage + packing ISBN 978-1-906480-41-7