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Ghost Passage

Balmer, Josephine
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Shearsman Books
Published: February 4, 2022
ISBN: 9781848617940
88 pages
Country of publication: United Kingdom

£10.95

Ghost Passage explores the ways in which we write ourselves in to the landscape, leaving our own trace, making our mark. From inscribed ancient artefacts and recently excavated writing tablets of Roman London – the earliest known written texts in the city – to tombstones in a remote Kent churchyard, the collection deciphers the hidden texts that weave through our past, articulating lost and often overlooked voices. Outside the usual boundaries of literature, here are graffitied tiles and household jugs, spells written on pewter amulets, stamped beer barrels and medical potions, as well as the everyday accounts and letters, even alphabet practice, of the writing tablets. Ghost Passage offers poetry – and history – from the ground up as it blossoms in unexpected places, resonating down through the centuries, providing the same power to protect and comfort even in the darkest times. These are the untold stories not of a literate upper class but of the diverse, ordinary inhabitants of a great city and beyond; the words we leave behind to ‘score these shuddering, ghosted streets/back into form and place’.

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