‘Dogs keep turning up in this story.’ As you may have noticed, I have a little habit for quotations about dogs. It dates to the early drafts of my novel, when I noted down any dog reference for my background archive. As it turns out, Valero Varesi’s most recent novel is a great dog resource, … Continue reading Valero Varesi
My first full collection of poetry, mixing themes of place and memory, family and loss. ‘In West South North, North South East, Daniel Bennett envisages landscapes of decay; urban Britain as a ruined, post-apocalyptic wasteland, haunted by its past, at odds with its present, fearful of its future; countryside and coast bound loosely together by mud … Continue reading West South North, North South East
'Trieste, new city That preserves a boyish adolescence.' Umberto Saba In July last year, around the time of my birthday, I visited Trieste with my daughter and my partner. It was the first real holiday we had taken together: a strange experience for us all, I think. Two halves of my life had been joined. … Continue reading Trieste: Saba, Morris, and Harwood
'This isn't a mental institute, it's a dog kennel.' Adolfo Bioy Casares I'm a recent convert to the aimless joys of dog walking. I borrow a dog so the pleasures are more acute. Face it: a man walking alone in the woods looks like a potential suicide or a sexual predator. Bring a dog and you prove … Continue reading Dog With A Bone
These cool spaces, always light and airy, retaining their silence through a fragile, communally agreed sense of order. The smell of paper, and plastic wrapping, which, for me, still remains an evocative association, almost painful in its intensity. My first library was a travelling yellow bus which stopped off every week in the village where … Continue reading Libraries
'I stopped my bicycle under a street lamp near Riddervolds Square and spread out the map to see where I was going.' Over the last years, loyal to the time in my life when I eschewed travel for reading, when the word edged out the world, I've taken to choosing a novel or book of … Continue reading Trapped In Oslo – The Blue Room by Hanne Ørstavik
'They dream only of America To be lost among the thirteen million pillars of grass' John Ashbery I first read On the Road at the age of sixteen, during a family holiday in Anglesey, where I burrowed down in a caravan sleeping bag, taking secret nips from a bottle of White Horse whisky while my … Continue reading Why America?