Tag Archives: 21st Century

Disturbing Fiction

It must have been at thirteen, fourteen at most that I found a piece of fiction both repugnant and riveting in equal measure. I remember the fiction. It was Kafka’s The Metamorphosis. Perhaps I was too young to read Kafka, … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Literary Criticism, Literature in Translation | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Solace Through Reading

It seems to me that literary critics fall into two groups. There are probably more, but for the sake of this post, two will do. Most aspire to emulate nineteenth century men of letters, bloviating endlessly, mostly, it seems to me, … Continue reading

Posted in Literary Criticism | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments

Disburdenment Through Reading

This recent piece in the LA Review of Books seized my attention, and as a consequence I’m reading Uses of Literature. It is one of those rare books of literary criticism, if you are fascinated as I am by the … Continue reading

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Quirky Treasure-House of Sebald’s Mind

Leafing through an anthology of articles and essays called The Emergence of Memory: Conversations with WG Sebald, it strikes me how little of his work I’ve spent any time with. My love of his books is based solely on Rings of Saturn, his … Continue reading

Posted in Essays, Fiction, Uncategorised | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

Walking the Woods and the Water by Nick Hunt

I began to read travel literature when the peripatetic period of my late teens and twenties came to an end. Patrick Leigh Fermor, Dervla Murphy and Wilfred Thesiger offered some relief for the yearning for adventure and wild places that … Continue reading

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A Work of Fiction by Louise Gluck

A Work of Fiction As I turned over the last page, after many nights, a wave of sorrow envel- oped me. Where had they all gone, these people who had seemed so real? To distract myself, I walked out into … Continue reading

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Fog Island Mountains by Michelle Bailat-Jones

Before trying to convey my impressions of Fog Island Mountains I ought to begin with a disclaimer that its writer Michelle Bailat-Jones is not only a friend, but a discerning reader who shares more of my literary tastes than any … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

Discovering the Dark Mountain Project.

Last night’s launch event for the sixth issue of Dark Mountain corroborated my initial impression of the community that surround this network of writers, musicians and artists. I’ve been immersed daily in the writing and art of this network since … Continue reading

Posted in Essays, Personals, Philosophy, Poetry, Politics, Science | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Hong Kong 1950s-1960s (Fan Ho)

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Sensorium of the World

A friend sends me an email to ask if I know the poems of American poet Jorie Graham. I am aware of Graham’s work, thanks to an interview with Helen Vendler who talked of a trend in Graham’s work to return … Continue reading

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments