I am a former academic, now a speechwriter, living in Canberra, Australia, with my husband and two daughters. This blog is a way of sustaining and recording my love of literature. I try to break out of the canon where I can, and to reach into lands and languages I don’t know, but I do orbit some bright particular stars: John Donne and George Herbert (about whom I wrote a book); their successors Gerard Manley Hopkins, Christina Rossetti, and RS Thomas; the great novelists Jane Austen, George Eliot, and Henry James; the lyric poets of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. These are my enduring preoccupations, but I will write about anything that catches my mind's eye and that seems to speak to the greater human preoccupation with words as carriers of truth and beauty - all we know on earth, as Keats had it, and all we need to know.