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Home Truths


A Poetic Memoir of an Adult Gap Year
Hannah Hutchinson

ISBN: 978-1-78382-061-0
Published: 2014
Pages: 282
Key Themes: Mental Health, Dysfunctional Family, Travel Poetry


With two failed marriages, a fractured thumb, a mother who didn’t want her to be a daughter, a daughter who didn’t want her to be a mother and a lover who doesn’t care one way or another, the narrator of these poems moves home two hundred and fifty miles from north to south, seeking peace.

She treats herself to a year out, an adult gap year. An arrested teenager who believes in serial monogamy, we follow her spiritual trail as she takes a Mediterranean cruise to the Middle East and travels by sports car to Oxford, France and London with a stranger - an American with whom she has hitherto only been in an epistolary relationship. Her equilibrium is temporarily interrupted by a sick sister who arrives on her doorstep and a return visit to Manchester, before together they set off on an adventure into India.

Hannah’s reflections and resolution are related with searing honesty, satirical wit and a sexual explicitness.

About the Author

Hannah Hutchinson is well-travelled, a lover of good literature and was a teacher of the French language, and poetry. To immerse oneself in her prolific poetry is to embark on her emotional voyage from despair to euphoria, from intimate introversion in her exploration of the sensations associated with rejection, to the joys of discovery in her informed works on far-away cultures, as she searches through rough seas and leaden skies for the sunlit hills of tranquillity.

With each poem, symbolically equivalent to one mile from South Manchester to Poole, we read as, like Ahaseurus the Jew, Hannah creeps forth from the dark caves of Mount Carmel. Liberated like a free-range hen, shedding caduceus, her gap year of experimental poetry is testament to her resilience and reflects a positivist philosophy and adjustments to unrequited loves.

She has the ability, like Sylvia Plath, to turn emotional trauma into art. Hannah writes with an original voice and assured technique with a lively interplay of language, intellect and emotion.

The reader will be left wanting to know what came before, and what has happened since. In the words of Oliver Twist: “Please, Sir, I want some more!”

Book Extract

Mr Stripes

Predator and prey
Both revel in the exchange:
Wild tiger cub at close range
Acute hearing, eyesight and smell

Unperturbed sleeping like a baby.
Antlers peeping over tiger-grass and sedge
Unsurpassed power and majesty at meadow’s edge,
Exquisite markings.

Kingfisher hovers, anteater snuffles,
Hidden behind elephant-grass screen,
Humbled in tiger’s presence;
Perversely - peacocks preen.

Golden orb of Phoebus Apollo
Glistens over dawn’s magic hollow
Where a solitary ambusher, a meat-pusher
Has exercised his scratch on bark in the dark.

India, land of many fields
This killing field an inconspicuous field
For opportunists, hunters and poachers
And other encroachers, reducing tiger population,

Once home to hermits and holy-men.
Once the Maharajahs’ hunting reserve -
To kill, the elite preserve; kill 109 to earn a trophy,
Cause this spectacular species to atrophy.

Black bear barks, but bounces away
Like teenage street loafers in fur-fringed boots.
Crepuscular creature, critically endangered, crafty charismatic cat,
Elusive and fleeting, defeating amateur cameramen

Patient with sandwich and flask
To perform their strategic task.
Passing their time reading up on
The green manual of co-existence.

Tiger patrol, who’s in control?
Brahma – giver of life,
Vishnu – preserver of life,
Shiva – destroyer of life?

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  • Model: paperback
  • 175 Units in Stock

This product was added to our catalog on Thursday 15 May, 2014.

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