Between 2015 and 2017, Nancy Gaffield walked the 270-mile Greenwich Meridian Trail from Peacehaven to Sand le Mere, in order to investigate the way that landscapes are disturbed and reordered by history and memory. In Meridian, the line of longitude is the ‘zero point’ through which these forces speak: the intersecting planes of poetry and song, politics and the polis, land and sea, presence and absence, shadow and light.
‘Nancy Gaffield’s bravely resourceful long poem takes us ‘true North’ with her along the variegated trails marking England’s portion of the Meridian. Her lithe, varied poetic lines embody the present and the historic, the minute and the gargantuan, the simple and the complex, the everyday and the artistic, the expected and the surprising—the physical, mental, and emotional experience of her explorations. Combining meditations, reactions, observations, memories with striking ideas, inspired descriptions, literary recalls, the poem captures everything from dirt to ecology to philosophy. Readers will prize this important, inspiring book: the Line, lines, a life brilliantly fused.’