A Poem…

For My Son, Walking Home from School Alone for the First Time. 18th June 2014



Today the boy will walk home alone

Here begins the shock of dissolving

The mother glue

The boy whose body I protected


Defended from suggestions to


Held fast despite dire predictions

Then born, waxed like an apple

Squalling and strong

For 11 years the instinct

Gut pure and keen-bladed

Parrying snarks and criticisms

Of too boisterous, too clinging, too big, too small

That sticky hand, those sharp little teeth, curls and sturdy feet

Is almost as tall as me

Has moods, his own tastes and opinions

Is kind and thoughtful


And has decided he’d like to walk home alone

Today begins the slow shock of dissolving

The mother glue

Reduced to enquiring about quantities of food ingested, sleep clocked, happiness enjoyed

Momentous though no bells ring

Only an ache and the skin crawl dread of knives, bad men, the stampede of traffic

Sudden loss.


What Our Insistence On Ferrante’s Identity Actually Means About Women, Consent, And Art

Excellent piece…

Books & Reviews

I am currently reading and enjoying the internationally acclaimed Neapolitan novels by Elena Ferrante featuring childhood friends Elena and Lila after everyone whose literary taste I trust kept raving about them online. This week I have just started the second one – they are four, and I’m told the two last ones are the real jewels – and I do not know much either about the childhood friends’ fate, or how the novel, let alone the series, may end. I know even less about the author, except that we share a name and that makes me happy somehow.

Yesterday morning my Twitter feed went crazy after the New York Times reported that an Italian journalist claims to know Ferrante’s real identity. It turns out the now international acclaimed author’s name is just a pseudonym under which a woman decided to write four of the most successful novels of the…

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