In May 2020 we will be launching Christina Thatcher's second poetry collection, How to Carry Fire. Ahead of her new online course for the Poetry School, Christina has written a blog post about the burning down of her childhood home, and why, over 10 years later fire still fascinates her.
Here's an extract:
'More than ten years on, I still think of our burning home. Every time I sit next to beach bonfires, roast marshmallows, shove kindling into a woodstove, I consider again what fire brings and takes away from us. As a writer, I am fascinated by how fire survivors tell their stories as well as how fire is depicted in mythology (see: Prometheus) and even in our media (see: the fiery metaphors of American politics). But most of all, I am interested in how poets speak to, and about, fire. It is this obsession that has led me to develop an upcoming course on the poetics of fire.'
'My new online course, Lighting the Flame: Writing Fire Studio will give all those who join a chance to consider how fire enters our lives. We will read poetry which explores the elemental, physical, and metaphorical incarnations of fire. We will write our own inner and outer fires together, speaking to themes so often represented by its flames: destruction, growth and passion. If you have ever sat awed beside a fire, then this course is for you. Come along and learn all the ways in which poetry can burn.'
On How to Carry Fire, coming in 2020:
'In the brave and moving poems of How To Carry Fire, Christina Thatcher writes powerfully of the things that love can survive. This book has lived a life, and the poet has the ability to shape experience into unforgettable writing. I admire it for the way it looks big problems full in the face, and comes back with a store of beauty. This is a poet with her own world, who is shaping an important body of writing. Just as, in the collection's exemplary opening poem, a family tries to itemise its losses, so these significant, memorable poems add to the store of the world's treasures.' —Jonathan Edwards