A Picnic on Ice: Selected Poems

Matthew Sweeney

Sweeney's poems are reflective, funny, supremely inventive and impeccably written. This is contemporary poetry at its very best. - Charles Simic

"Sweeney's poems show a remarkable steadiness of voice and coherence of purpose as their narratives of the seemingly everyday unfold sometimes Gothic chills and surprises, straight story lines looping into memorably grotesque twists." -University of Toronto Quarterly

"These poems are gem-like, condensed stories." -Canadian Literature

"The poems are rich with situation and character, embryos of narrative, pulsing with implicit life." -Ruth Fainlight, Financial Times

"The work is one large metaphor: a parable for the human condition…[Sweeney] is one of our finest poets of the unconscious; of darkness brought to light and madly, glintingly, against all expectation, shared." -Ruth Padel, The Independent

"This is poetry bent on startling us out of com-placency. Sweeney is brilliantly determined to wake us up." -Kathleen McCracken, Poetry Ireland Review