INDIGO DREAMS

PUBLISHING LTD

 

Hannah Stone has an MA in Creative Writing from Leeds Trinity University, where she established the concept of the Wordspace imprint, since published by Indigo Dreams Publishing, the first volume being ‘An After-Dinner’s Sleep’, a collaboration with Gill Lambert and Maria Preston.  

 

Her first solo collection, Lodestone, was published by Stairwell Books, York in 2016.

 

She won the Yorkshire Poetry Prize for the Poetry Business Book and Pamphlet Competition in 2015/6 (judged by Billy Collins) and was a winner of the Geoff Stevens Memorial Prize in 2016.

 

London born Hannah has lived in Leeds for many years and she is a welcome reader and facilitator on the northern poetry circuits as well as further afield.

 

She is co-editor of the poetry ezine Algebra of Owls, and convenes the annual poets’ and composers’ forum for the Leeds Lieder Festival.  

 

She has been published in a number of anthologies, and in print and online journals including The North, Dream Catcher, Ground, Snakeskin, Poesia Indignada and Caught in the Net.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poetry

 

138 x 216mm

 

54 pages

 

£7.99 + P&P UK

 

ISBN 978-1-910834-46-6

 

PUB: JUNE 2017

 

 

ORDER HERE

 

 

 

 

 

 

In vibrant but accessible poems, Missing Miles roams through Britain, mythology, and recent history, commenting on the quintessential millennial quest for comprehension and compassion.  Sometimes acerbic, often tender, this second collection by writer Hannah Stone accompanies the reader to familiar places and then in new directions.

 

******

 

‘An assured and impressive second collection. I love Hannah Stone’s poems for their sharp observation, wit, Northern flavour and wonderful sense of place.’

Carole Bromley

 

‘Missing Miles offers us a world in balance, its poems poised between stillness and storm, word and music, the unknowing and the unknowable. With equal parts care and boldness, Stone’s lines are tightly held and lightly let go, and we never know which way they’ll fall.’

Oz Hardwick

 

 

MISSING MILES

 

HANNAH STONE

 

Winner Geoff Stevens Memorial

Poetry Prize 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

Missing miles

 

‘FP Castle Bolton, 2 ½ miles.’

The gate swings open,

brushing nettles and benign cow parsley,

leading to a path curving perversely

through rough sweet stubble,

yielding to the sudden cool of a thicket

of alders and willows, muddy boot prints

beside a plank bridge.

Then, uncut hay sighs as you pass through it,

looking for the next finger post.

 

‘FP Castle Bolton, 2 ½ miles.’

The charitable view might be

that the surveyor got distracted

by the curlew cranking open

his scimitar beak to split

the still air, or lost concentration

when a stone barn appeared, filling

the summer sky with fidgets of swallows.

 

Maybe it was a light-fingered cartographer,

hungry for a taste of summer peace.

He hears the essence of the landscape

in the peewit’s peevish cry,

gets the measure of the drystone walls,

gathers the aimless sheep

and a handful of meadow crane-bill

and folds the missing half mile into his pocket.

 

 

 

Territorial dispute

 

Aesthetically, I admit I am charmed

by the casual symmetry

of stripes, the voluptuous

moist opening into which you retreat

but, snail, this is contested land.

 

This is mine, my more than space and time

hedged between the strident calls

of kitchen and office,

boundaried by marking and ironing,

 

my space for welcoming the fall

of freckled sunlight wriggling

through unpruned boughs,

for relishing the quickening

of green spears knifing their way

through recalcitrant soil,

for blessing the gracious fruit

which colours as it swells,

 

my time for tranquil minutes

after breakfast, culling handfuls

of rocket and parsley

to sharpen my mid-day salad,

for popping out at dusk to gather laundry

which has spent my absence

absorbing the garden’s fragrance.

and the occasional spider.

 

I’ve been kind and patient, all day –

now, it’s war with molluscs –

death by the blue pellet,

or the rank sweetness

of the beer trap.

 

 

 

 

Spa Break

 

A figure-skater in soft slippers,

she sketches shapes on my spine,

her work marked by the tracery she leaves.

Warmed fingers find knots,

pop them like bubblewrap;

she poises a fingertip on the summit

of my shoulder blade. Her tunic rustles

as she reaches for more oil,

then both thumbs glide in a long crossed chassé

to the edge of the towel,  

and, because she is a stranger to me,

my body cannot anticipate the next twizzle,

or where her palm will come to rest,

nor how far she will venture to pummel

the contours stretched on her table.

 

Surfacing, my senses collect themselves,

as she cradles one forearm, shakes tension into limpness.

Now, knuckles knead the heel of my hand;

joints click in sympathy with the heating.

Wind and hail clatter, no-nonsense, against the windowpane.

She pivots, runs her hands from nape to coccyx,

skims a flattering hourglass on my back,

bends to whisper into my abandoned hair,

tells me she’s done.  

 

 

 

Changing Gear

 

The week after I relinquished

a big, bad wolf of a job,

I started to sift the boxes of papers

that had contained my role,

 

rationalising long-kept notes

of other people’s evidence,

recycling redundant knowledge;

shifting up to the loft things to be kept.

 

Here, cobwebs are sketchy traps

holding now abandoned prey;

hollowed husks of wasps

scattered in segments on the floor.

 

The new files find companions

with faded labels,

messages in bottles

from a past now all at sea.

 

I open the velux window,

watch dust motes whirl

in the influx of cool air;

catch sounds from the outside world,

 

a bee bumbling

high above flower beds,

next door’s grandchildren

planning garden games,

 

a car changing gear

halfway up the hill,

taking someone to a destination

I do not need to name.  

 

 

 

author photo 9781910834466