David Musgrave’s seventh collection of poems is a kind of clearing: poems which open up, sometimes painfully, sometimes joyfully, what it is to be in the world. From obliquely confessional poems concerned with the death of his mother and the unexpected endings of significant relationships, to celebrations of new lives, this collection encompasses a wide range of emotions, attitudes, forms and styles. The poems show a significant sharpening from earlier work and increasingly move in the direction of uncompromising honesty. Numb and Number is an elegantly powerful collection by a significant poet who is entering a new and interesting phase of his career. David Musgrave is affiliated with the University of Newcastle, where he teaches creative writing.