We couldn’t survive without hope – that light at the end of the tunnel which seems to promise ‘this will pass’ when times are hard. Perfect for the New Year, these poems offer hope in a whole range of guises, from the uplift of the first signs of spring to the infectious optimism of a child who believes he will live for ever if he eats his greens.
There’s also a poem in which a grandmother’s words become a precious talisman:
“…empty your paradise onto a desk:
your white sands, green hills and fresh fish.
Shine the lamp on it like the fresh hope
of morning, and keep staring at it till you sleep.”
from ‘A Portable Paradise’ by Roger Robinson
Each of these poems is a little chink of light – a reminder that a moment of joy and consolation is always just around the corner.
Poems by Fleur Adcock, Sujata Bhatt, Arthur Hugh Clough, Katie Dunstan, Kerry Hardie, Winifred Holtby, Roy Marshall, Paula Meehan, Roger Robinson, Laura Theis and Walt Whitman.
Cover illustration by Sarah Kirby.