Sign of Lightning

 The streets of Tel Aviv are full of sand, even in the cracks of the newly laid concrete footpaths. There’s a feeling of the desert encroaching on the edge of this bourgeoning city, where the Arab markets flourish next to European restaurants.

Ted Hughes, Assia, and the Kabbalah

  Kabbalah (Hebrew קַבָּלָה‎)  literally means “receiving/tradition”. It is an ancient series of spiritual teachings originating in the twelfth century BC, in the town of Safed in Palestine. Notes found in Ted Hughes’ loose leaf notebook in the British Library summarise the story of a Jewish Talmudist, Rabbah bar Hannah, who set down  his life story of…

Folktale: Excerpt from “Capriccio: a Novel”

it was a cat-and-mouse game between the lovers. In his poetry, TH referred to his mistress as ‘a magnificent leopard’ in his set of poems to her, called ‘Capriccio’. I’ve used this for the title of my novel. Each chapter refers to one of these 20 poems. The excerpt above is from an earlier draft of…

The meaning of ‘Capriccio’

DICTIONARY DEFINITION OF CAPRICCIO | kəˈprɪtʃɪəʊ | noun (plural capriccios) 1 a lively piece of music, typically one that is short and free in form: its four acts contain a number of capriccios and chorales. 2 a painting or other work of art representing a fantasy or a mixture of real and imaginary features: two capriccios by de la Joue which fitted 18th century frames. ORIGIN: early 17th century (denoting a sudden change of mind): from Italian,…

About ‘Capriccio: A Novel’

“Capriccio: a Novel” is inspired by the life of Assia Gutmann Wevill, the “other woman” who came between poets Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath. At the request of the Hughes Estate names of the protagonists have been changed. However, those readers familiar with the true story will easily recognise the main players. This version of the…

The Capriccio Poems

WELCOME TO MY NEW BLOG, “CAPRICCIO” Here you can read articles and see photos of the real story behind “Capriccio: A Novel”, soon to be published by Cilento Publishing. I took the title of my novel from a series of poems by Ted Hughes, which were written about his relationship with Assia Gutmann Wevill. My…