Elizabeth-Jane Burnett

The Grassling
  • The Grassling

  • 'A subtle, moving celebration of place and connectedness . . . The Grassling brings the sounds, smells and sights of the countryside alive like few other books. Burnett stretches the limits of prose, infusing it with poetic intensity to create a powerful, original voice' PD Smith, Guardian

    What fills my lungs is wider than breath could be. It is a place and a language torn, matted and melded; flowered and chiming with bones. That breath is that place and until I get there I will not really be breathing.

    Spurred on by her father's declining health and inspired by the history he once wrote of his small Devon village, Elizabeth-Jane Burnett delves through layers of memory, language and natural history to tell a powerful story of how the land shapes us and speaks to us. The Grassling is a book about roots: what it means to belong when the soil beneath our feet is constantly shifting, when the people and places that nurtured us are slipping away.

Elizabeth-Jane Burnett is a writer of English and Kenyan heritage. She was born in Devon and her work is inspired by the landscape in which she was raised. She is the author of Swims, a Sunday Times Poetry Book of the Year, and her poetry has been highly commended in the Forward Prize.