Sunday, 13 January 2013

Sunday Review

Here in Cornwall, so far as the weather is concerned, we have had a dismal beginning to 2013. For much of the time a heavy grey mist has engulfed the beauty of our landscape and, in the intervening periods, we have been treated to - yes, you've guessed it - yet more heavy rain. Because of this, like Jessica Traynor in Nollaig Na mBan, I too could wish for 'a day disrobed' that looks beyond 'January's darkness/to search for the horizon's light'. Equally, I could wish for 'a little more promised each day'. On Tuesday, however, far from the promise of light, David Mellor's  It's Breaking News reminded us of the media's appetite for tragedy and of the fact that, all too often, the perpetrators of the most terrible violence are 'rewarded' by a perverse kind of celebrity while 'those who have gone / have no name'. Here at Poetry 24,  we ended the year sadly in the shadow of the Sandy Hook shootings and, with the greatest respect to the poets who wrote so powerfully in response to that tragedy, we hope and pray that this year no such poems will be penned.

On Wednesday, Philip Johnson's Fantuckinfastic Ideas gave us a sharp-tongued and insightful response to the recent proposal  that we should legislate against high levels of fat, sugar and salt, particularly in those products targeted at younger people. Then, on Thursday, our own Hamish Mack gave us Australia Ablaze, a delightfully spare and understated piece that ironically reassures us that we 'can / maintain our / lifestyles' but quietly asserting that we may 'make our children pay'. Then, on Friday, it was me again with 'A Dream of Retirement'. (I make no apologies for having a bit of a rant. There is, in my opinion, not enough of public ranting going on at the moment.)

Moving swiftly on, however, we arrive at Saturday and James Bessant's 'Food for Thought'. This was a piece that posed important questions about prevailing attitudes towards food and about the way in which western society both produces and markets it. Thank you, James, for ending the week on a note that may be uncomfortable for many of us. It is fitting that we should remember that, as we in the west hit our January diets, there are those, far too many, who may starve.

That said, I wish all our readers well. Please, if you will, spread the word. In order to continue this important work, we need your submissions. Remember: Poetry 24, where news is the muse.