Tuesday, March 03, 2009

'Handbag', by Ruth Fainlight

The 48th Poem of the Week is Ruth Fainlight's 'Handbag', which you can read here on the excellent Poetry Archive site, and also listen to the poet herself reading it in November 2007.

As the site says:-

One hallmark of her work is the special attention she pays to the apparently ordinary stuff of life, finding strangeness and even mysticism beneath familiar surfaces. Domestic life often contains and reveals the most significant truths. 'Handbag', for instance, with its intimate textures and smells, conjures an entire world, moving in just twelve lines from the smallness of the everyday objects carried around by the mother to a formidable list of human experiences : "womanliness, / and love, and anguish, and war".

Left, the third of the winners in our World Book Day bookmark design competition, by Qasim Bari.

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