Press Launch: New titles by Sarah Hymas & Catherine Okoronkwo
- 6:00 pm
10 January 2021
Online | Free
Blood and Water / ọbara na mmiri is a compelling debut: tangled between African roots and the pull of Western vices, these lyric poems and prose memoirs present a pilgrimage of self-discovery reflected through the lens of place, myth, sickness and loss.
“Blood and Water / ọbara na mmiri begins with an ordinary everyday scene that many who knows what it is like to live in an intergenerational home will be able to identify with. The African overtones draws you into lives that are real and gritty. One can almost smell the tobacco and taste the goat pepper soup and the stews – pleasurable moments. But even this cannot take away from the abuse and the tacit silent collusion by the elders; the ‘entitled’ folks who struts around taking what does not belong to them! The contents of this book are not to be read for entertainment. It gives you a glimpse of life, captured in the moment, and sometimes reminds you of experiences of the past. It draws you in to confront the subjects that no one wants to talk about and yet it is real and right in our midst. I dare you to read this and share its meanings to you with others.” — The Rev Dr Rose Hudson-Wilkin, MBE, QHC, Bishop of Dover
Catherine Okoronkwo, of Nigerian heritage, grew up in the Middle East and studied in the USA and UK. She holds an MA (2010) and PhD (2018) in Creative Writing and now serves as a Church of England priest in the South-West.
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melt is a love song to the ocean, of hope and grief, of belonging and longing. It begins in the north west of England, on the shores of Morecambe Bay, and ends in a future that may or may not have been foreseen in the Arctic.
melt, structurally influenced by the poet’s work as an artist book maker, enfolds the intimacy of the known with what is unseen, and seemingly remote. Here, Hymas creates a poetic space of ocean as an assemblage of animal, plant, plastic, mineral, technology, human and more, a book that reaches for an ecological mutuality, a reorientation of that which appears distant into a poetic proximity. And just as there is no one way to read the sea, there is no one way to read this book. The philosophical, scientific and non-linguistic approaches that underpin these marine lyrics reveal the slender folds between internal and external worlds, between poem, woman and ocean.
Sarah Hymas is a writer, poet and maker based in Lancashire. Her writing appears in print, multimedia exhibits, as lyrics, installations, artist books and on stage. Her debut collection Host (2010) is available from Waterloo Press.
Blood and Water / ọbara na mmiri is the 8th volume in WP’s Arts Council England-funded LIT UP programme for emerging poets of colour.
Header image – painting by Dan Civa