“[Raising Sparks]… is as dark as Mussorgsky, as awesome as Akhmatova. MacMillan makes Roberts’ words flow as naturally as psalm-pointing. One moment he is as desolate as Rilke (“came a single lightning bolt”), the next as subtle as Sappho or a Tang dynasty poem (“Under my shell was a smithereen of sun/ hidden in snow among wild yellow olives”)…..the effect is hypnotising.”