A wind has blown the rain away and blown the sky away and all the leaves away, and the trees stand. (e e cummings)
As I write this, gales are slamming the house, rumbling down the chimney like a train and shaking the last of the leaves from trees, bent almost double with each gust. Everywhere is soaking and the thatch drips relentlessly on to the paths and cobbles, like a chorus of leaky taps. We had a power cut earlier which has left us isolated, without telephones and computers, heating, hot water, radio or television and the dawning, which always happens during intermittent blackouts, that we are entirely reliant on the power supply for almost every modern comfort and amenity. The Aga is ticking over gently, a sleeping dragon, unperturbed by such mediocre interruptions to its daily routine, so coffee and porridge are still possible.
The inability to access information about the normally inescapable agony of Brexit or the GE is a plus, though, and more than makes up for the unusual radio silence in the house and the lack of screens illuminating corners of the kitchen. (Apart from this one, as I write on battery-time!)
4Word recently put out a general call for pamphlet submissions and we were delighted to receive large numbers of responses, almost all of which were of the highest standard. As a result, Stella and I had a very difficult time whittling them down to a shortlist of eight. However, we have managed it, all poets have now been informed and we look forward to receiving their full pamphlets, so that we can make our decision regarding the final four. Congratulations to them and the best of luck. Thank you to all who submitted and condolences to those who didn’t quite make it; Stella and I wish you every success in the future.
And in other news. Our fabulous new poet is Sue Kindon with her remarkable pamphlet, Outside, the Box, due to be launched on December 1st. Sue, who lives in France, is widely published and has placed work with The Rialto, Poetry Saltzburg Review, The Interpreter’s House, Domestic Cherry and Obsessed with Pipework, to name but a few. Her poetry is compelling, delicate and often intricate, fine-tuned to both landscape and emotion. Outside, the Box is a striking collection and if you would like to pre-order a copy, please contact us at https://www.4word.org/contact/ (£5.99 plus p&p)
For information about our other available pamphlets and their authors please see – https://www.4word.org/authors/