Sasha Dugdale’s poems explore the mysterious solitudes of individual lives with tender, unsparing lucidity. The book opens with a sequence written at the Pushkin family estate. The great Russian poet, setting out to St Petersburg, turns back when a hare runs in front of his horse: the superstitious act saves his life. Such chance or fated moments where paths cross are at the heart of the collection. A boy on a train, passing a gold chain through his fingers, sparks a buried childhood memory in a watching passenger; lovers reach out to touch in the dark, while, a dying soldier holds to the sight of house martins swooping over a pool. In fragmentary meetings, Dugdale finds a source of hope and art.