One Wanted Thing

Cherry Smyth

About the book…

‘Then comes floating,

skin a guest of air.

I hold my palms just beneath

the surface, plying the tension

as if they could lift the water up

and it would not break, like love should be,

elastic, fluent, so familiar,

you can’t tell if you're in it or out of it.’

­ from ‘Water’

Cherry Smyth’s outstanding second collection, One Wanted Thing, shows a poet coming into a true voice. Her poems give imaginative room for an intriguing array of delicately shifting sensibilities.

Whether writing of love, friendship, the conflict between the ideal and reality or the search for physical, moral and emotional beauty, Smyth comes to the task armed with a formidable poetic arsenal: anger, a wry humour, a self-reflective sense of doubt, an insight into the psyche of others, a belief in the power of the word.

Photo of the author, Cherry Smyth

About the author…

Cherry Smyth is an Irish poet, born in Ballymoney, County Antrim and raised in Portstewart. She has written three collections of poetry, a poetry pamphlet as well as a book, essays and reviews on contemporary visual arts. She has also published short fiction.

Her debut poetry collection, When the Lights Go Up, was published in 2001. Her anthology of women prisoners’ writing ,A Strong Voice in a Small Space, (2002), won the Raymond Williams Community Publishing Award in 2003.

A poetry pamphlet,The Future of Something Delicate was published in 2005. A second collection called One Wanted Thing (Lagan Press) appeared in 2006.

Her poems have been published in Breaking the Skin, an anthology of Irish poets, the Apples and Snakes Anthology, Velocity (2003), Magnetic North: The Emerging Poets.

New poems have been published in various magazines including; The North, The Shop, Staple, Magma and Poetry Ireland Review. She was a prize-winner in the Tonbridge Poetry Competition, 2006 and the London Writers' Competition, 2007.

Her short fiction has been published in many journals and anthologies including Blithe House Quarterly, Scealta, Short Stories by Irish Women, Telegram Books, Chroma, Queer Literary Journal, Tears in the Fence, The Anchor Book of New Irish Writing, amongst others.

She also contributes to a number of visual art magazines; Modern Painters, Art Monthly, Art Review and Circa. She has written essays on Jane and Louise Wilson, Orla Barry, Salla Tykka and Dirk Braeckman, among others. She was a curatorial adviser for 'Axis' online showcase, Open Frequency in 2006. An essay on photographer, Thomas Flechtner was published in a book on his work, 'Bloom' (2007).