My Dark Guardians | Lindsay Reid

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    Lindsay Reid is a Newcastle-based poet, a Geordie by adoption if not by birth. She was born in Redhill, Surrey and grew up in Hampshire, but moved to North East England to study and settled there. Lindsay has a PhD in Creative Writing from Newcastle University and a Masters in Creative Writing from the University of St Andrews. She is a qualified social worker, employed by a North East homelessness charity, and runs therapeutic writing workshops in the community. Her poems have appeared in various journals and anthologies including Magma and Mslexia; this is her debut collection.


    My Dark Guardians takes the reader into the world of chronic illness. These poems explore the complex negotiations involved in living with illness — the relationships within the context of hospital and those outside. They also explore what it means to be ill, and the constantly shifting emotions which are experienced. There is darkness in this collection, but also resilience and energy which come through the skilful handling of form and tone. Some poems confront pain head on, while others work through vivid and unexpected imagery. The stark and unambiguous medical vocabulary is offset by the poems’ musicality and rhythmical certainty.

              Lindsay Reid does not shy away from difficult areas. The unblinking directness in the depiction of medical procedures is matched in her exploration of the ways in which identity can be shaped by overly rigid expectations. The poems ask the reader to think about uncomfortable experiences — loss, shame and forgiveness. This is a poet who understands her craft — her use of formal patterning and rhyme to encapsulate intense emotions is exceptional. There is darkness but there is also an underlying faith and belief in the power of love. My Dark Guardians is a striking and original first collection.’                                                    

    — Cynthia Fuller

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