Twelve Words for Moss

Elizabeth-Jane Burnett

£16.99

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Penguin Books Ltd
18 May 2023
ISBN: 9780241556832
Paperback
192 pages

From the publisher

'Exquisite, luminous and quietly radical . . . I loved it' Lucy Jones

'A fascinating, subtle and risk-taking book' Robert Macfarlane


Glowflake, Rocket, Small Skies, Kind Spears, Marilyn . . . Moss is known as the living carpet but if you look really closely, it contains its own irrepressible light.

In Twelve Words for Moss, Elizabeth-Jane Burnett celebrates the unsung hero of the plant world with a unique blend of poetry, nature writing and memoir.

Making her way through wetlands from Somerset to County Tyrone, Burnett discovers the hidden vibrancy and luminous beauty of these overlooked places. She also takes strength from them as she recovers from her grief at her father's death. As she meditates on and renames her favourite species of moss, she finds a healing power in language, and draws inspiration from the resilience and tenacity of her plant - and human - friends.

'Burnett stretches the limits of prose, infusing it with poetic intensity to create a powerful, original voice' Guardian