Newsletter October Newsletter

Worth Reading: We Are All from Somewhere Else. Migration and Survival in Poetry and Prose by Ruth Padel

Annually, around 50mn people are forced from their homes by conflict and disaster. This book contains 11 short essays, each introducing a sequence of poems. The book is in two halves. The first revolves around migration in the natural world: birds’ migration follows a yearly pattern, for instance, with ‘homes’ or nests created in different places. 

The second half explores the history, myths, imaginative resonance and backstory of migration. The hardening of UK immigration policy from 2008, the creation of the UK Border Agency, detention centres, a brutal deportation system, and tabloid hostility to asylum seekers are set against the knowledge that, if we explore our ancestry, we will all find stories of migration. This beautifully-written book encourages deep reflection.