a wise book that asks us to read slowly. Deryn Rees-Jones
There is mourning… there is questioning … there is also hope, and above all a boundless sense of curiosity Helen Tookey
extending what is possible for the human body within the more-than-human world Harriet Tarlo
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. (more on my blog) Buy direct from me or from Waterloo Press
melt was one of seven books shortlisted for the 2021 Ledbury Munthe Poetry Prize for Second Collections The Judges, Sandeep Parmar and Naomi Shihab Nye, said this about it:
“Water that sings/ through blood and brain” permeates the mesmerizing series of contemplative poems in Sarah Hymas’s melt. A triumph of imagery interweave, human and sea, these moving poems employ lush, melodious language, rhythmic pacing, a hypnotic sense of attentive presence. Who are we after all, as we acknowledge the push and pull of waves, the mysteries present within every body of water? Absence and presence shimmer in painterly floating lines which resist traditional arrangements. A long shore of single lines stitches the poems, as they also seem to float. “The sea lifts me/away from me/surrendering me to my mechanics/separate and contingent..” This is a book to meditate on for the rest of a life.
Buy direct from me for a origami whale to be slipped within the pages.
Best enjoyed in a darkened room, Towards a Stranding is a Hymas&Lewis soundscape of a poem from melt. You can listen to it here
A five minute excerpt from the zoom launch, 10th January 2021
The golden plankton : phytoplankton, those tiny marine plants, provide the oxygen for our every second breath. To celebrate their existence a paper re/de/construction of one went in random copies of melt. Unlike the ones we depend on, these have all gone now.
one of the most glorious things in publishing a book is receiving emails from readers on how they found the book. Here are a few
The choice to make melt so sensual to hold, the cover tactile, the quality of the paper used, the pleasing spaces and layout. That’s before its read! You are reminding us to engage all our senses whatever we do
You’ve sent my brain off in a million directions in grappling with human and nonhuman voices and how we can understand anything and it feels like your book is a key. There is so much to think with and feel with in it, so many lines I want to read over and over and copy out
I’m struck by the vulnerabilities – suddenly reading that description of rescuing the octopus from the net as a kind of bloody birth image – the way that not-mother theme threads through (the two of you carrying the tree) – and how it sits with the extraordinary other levels of exploration of self/world/other – I keep thinking about this – the ways you are so highly tuned in to the interrelations of ‘you’ and ‘world’
melt is a wonderful book. Perfect for any time but especially right now.