Hemisphere

I can’t believe I’m here, you have to think, then chuckle softly, which is kind of apt because I’m not.

Longbarrow Press is delighted to announce the publication of Hemisphere by Pete Green: a long poem in a short book.

Hemisphere tells the story of a circular voyage which proceeds from the Hebrides around the north Atlantic, Alaska and Siberia, then finally back to Europe. Along the way, the protagonist visits a doomsday seed vault, a giant qwerty keyboard, a boundary between Tuesday and Wednesday, the world’s largest island on a lake on an island on a lake on an island, two pubs and an Arctic coffee bar. These are all real locations on an impossible journey. Hemisphere is also a meta-travel narrative which poses questions about who has permission to practise ‘place writing’, and explores the power of imagination to push back against our ongoing personal lockdowns.

A beautifully produced 48-page ‘short book’, with illustrations by Abi Goodman, Hemisphere is available now from Longbarrow Press. You can read the opening section (‘North Uist’) here, and a further section (‘Vladivostock’) on the Creative Writing at Leicester site. Join us for the online launch of Hemisphere on Thursday 2 December, with readings and commentary by Pete Green; click here to register through Eventbrite (the event is free to attend).

You can order Hemisphere by clicking on the relevant PayPal link below (major debit cards accepted – no PayPal account required).

Hemisphere
48pp
£6.00

UK orders (+ £1.70 postage)

Europe orders (+ £4.50 postage)

Rest of World orders (+ £6 postage)

‘How can you write about Nunavut if you’ve never been there? For that matter, how can you even go there if you suffer from anxiety about flying or sailing? What if you can’t afford a ticket, or you can’t get away because of your family or your job?’  In a new post for the Longbarrow Blog, Pete Green considers the ‘literature of place’, and the (frequently privileged) ‘social composition of its authorship’, and explores alternative approaches to place writing. Click here to read ‘The confessions of a virtual tourist, or how and why I wrote Hemisphere’.  ‘There are for us, it seems, so many competing futures. So many glances this way or that, and so many story––––lines … leading away … The only certainty is: places exist for us only as long as there are people to breathe them.’  Mark Goodwin also considers questions of access to ‘place’, and the ‘unpeopled’ landscapes of lockdown, in a new text for the Longbarrow Blog, which accompanies a film-poem co-created with Henry Iddon. Click here to read (and watch) ‘All at Once’.

Following a successful residency at the Winter Garden in summer 2018, the Sheffield Independent Publishers Pop-up Shop returns to the Moor Market (The Moor, Sheffield, S1 4PF) between 1 – 14 December (opening hours: 8.30am–5pm, Mon-Sat). This two-week ‘retail residency’ brings some of the city’s most innovative and exciting independent presses together under one roof, including And Other Stories, Longbarrow Press, The Poetry Business and Vertebrate Publishing. The pop-up shop will include poetry, fiction, outdoor books, international literature, and much more. A not-to-be-missed opportunity to see and buy some beautiful editions, and to meet the publishers involved.

If you can’t make it to the Moor Market, you can still order direct from us throughout December; the last day to order books for Christmas delivery (to UK addresses) is Friday 17 December (if you’re in Sheffield, it’s Sunday 19 December, as we’ll be delivering these orders on foot). We can gift-wrap your orders and/or send them to a different UK address at no extra cost; simply email Brian Lewis at longbarrowpress@gmail.com with the details. Click here for a full list of our current hardbacks and to order titles. We also offer Longbarrow Gift Certificates (ideal for those last-minute presents); click here for details.

Images: Brian Lewis, Abi Goodman, Henry Iddon

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Lost Horizons

You’ve done the homework on the maps
but never trained that diligence within
and these waves’ mesmeric persistence
becomes your ultimatum. Time to think.

Pete Green‘s Hemisphere is the story of an impossible journey, told in verse, which circumnavigates the politics of interaction between people, places and poetry. On a chaotic round trip from the Hebrides across the north Atlantic, Canada, Alaska and Siberia, the poem invites reflection on government and nationality, geography, language and ‘post-truth’, fertility, decay, and imagination. Longbarrow Press is delighted to announce its publication as an 48-page ‘short book’, with illustrations by Abi Goodman, on 15 October; click here to order the book. You can also read an extract from Hemisphere here, and watch Pete Green’s short film for Hemisphere below:

On this slip road, in red mist
I could be closer to Mars

as each blank motor
burns on its course; with no one
in touching distance.

Our first poetry walk since 2019 is led by Chris Jones: a series of ascents and descents through the north-west Sheffield landscapes of his recent pamphlet Little Piece of Harm. Lost Horizons is a one-off event that spans the peaks of Stannington and the lowlands of Bradfield, via Storrs, Dungworth, and Damflask Reservoir. Along the way, Chris will introduce and read poems from Little Piece of Harm, a sequence that explores the geographical reach of Sheffield – its urban settings and its rural landmarks – and eavesdrops on the city’s conversations. The walk takes place on Saturday 23 October at 11am (rendezvous in the car park of Stannington Park, S6 6AF). This event is free, but capacity is strictly limited; for further information, and to book your place (via Eventbrite), click here.

“Books this good don’t come along too often​.​” Max Porter. “A remarkable poem: fresh, real, and truly radical. Read it!”David Morley. The European Eel by Steve Ely has been gathering acclaim since its publication by Longbarrow Press in July. “A beautiful piece of work … close observation combined with extensive scientific research lifts The European Eel above more conventional modern nature writing.” Read Charlie Connelly’s review in The New European. Sheenagh Pugh concludes her appraisal of the book with a similarly positive verdict: “This is, I think, his most consistently powerful and entertaining book for a while, and certainly one of the most impressive books of eco-poetry I have read.” You can read it here. Kathleen McPhilemy considers The European Eel in the context of eco-criticism and a literature of ‘the non-human’: “By presenting the eel’s life in the form of epic, just as Clare chose to represent Swordy Well through a first person voice, Ely has shown us which side he is on – the side of the oppressed and the threatened.” Click here to read ‘Writing about Nature: poets and the non-human’. If you missed the recent online launch of The European Eel, you can find a link to Steve Ely’s opening talk and reading here (a full audio-only version will appear on the Longbarrow site in the near future). Steve will be joined by writer and conservationist Laurence Rose for a talk, reading and Q&A at Holmfirth’s independent bookshop Read on Saturday 30 October (2pm start); click here for further details and to book your place.

J.R. Carpenter‘s This is a Picture of Wind, longlisted for the 2021 Laurel Prize last month, is still available from Longbarrow Press; click here for further details, and to order the book. Finally, Angelina D’Roza is among the poets scheduled to read as part of the Centre for Poetry and Poetics autumn series at the University of Sheffield. The reading takes place at the Arts Tower (LT05), Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TN, on Tuesday 19 October, 6pm-8pm (free, all welcome, no booking required).

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