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Wanted on Voyage

Wanted on Voyage

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Wanted on Voyage is concerned with travelling and journeying, in both space and time, and above all in memory. The collection opens with a short sequence about the ships of the Union Castle line, recalling Barford’s family’s flight from anti-Semitic and Fascist Italy to Africa, after which she moves effortlessly between past and present, between the 1930s and the twenty-first century.

There are poems about Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) where she grew up, and about the Holocaust, especially the fate of members of her own extended family. As might be expected from the writer of her ground-breaking first collection, Sweet Wine and Bitter Herbs, Jewish experience in twentieth-century Europe is a prominent theme, but both formally and thematically Wanted on Voyage is her most varied and diverse book to date.

"Wanda Barford’s poetry offers power without stridency. She’s adept at finding eloquence in simple images."
Michael W. Thomas, Other Poetry

"Wanda Barford was born in Milan in 1930 but left Italy for Africa with her parents at the start of the Second World War. She is still haunted by what happened 70 years ago and, as she looks back in this, her fifth collection of poetry, the sights and sounds are as vivid as the memories: 'the songs of the Mussolini era / still send shivers down my spine...'"

"Vivid juxtaposing of past and present."
Emma Klein, Ham and High

"A wonderful title for a collection of poems because we need poetry wherever we might be journeying."
Liz Cashdan, Jewish Renaissance

Wanda Barford was born in Milan but left Mussolini’s Italy for Africa with her parents at the outset of the Second World War. She subsequently moved to London and trained as a musician at the Royal College of Music. She has been a runner-up in the H.H. Wingate/Jewish Quarterly Poetry Competition, and Sweet Wine and Bitter Herbs (Flambard, 1997) was shortlisted for the Jewish Quarterly Literary Prize in 1997. Her other works are A Moon at the Door (1999), Losing, Finding (2002) and What Is the Purpose of Your Visit? (2006), all published by Flambard.