By W.D. Jackson

Price: £11.00

ISBN: 978 1 910323 11 3

“History, Stephen said, is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake.” — Ulysses

Like Boccaccio in Florence (2009) and A Giotto Triptych (2014), Afterwords is a selection from Opus 3, the on-going third part of W.D. Jackson’s Then and Now, and also a work in its own right. As such, it concentrates on exploring the ramifications past and present in both private and public life of the cul de sac of revenge or retribution, ‘the curse’ of (self-)destructive greed and competitiveness – setting up against them the open possibilities of reconciliation and of living and letting live.

With contributions in the form of adaptations and translations from W.G. Sebald, Rilke, Heine, Villon, Chaucer and others, Afterwords ‘re-dreams’ some parts of the “nightmare” of Joyce’s paradox – focussing in particular on the lives of both voluntary and involuntary outsiders or personae non gratae – and, in trying to awake from it, contemplates how? and awake to what? But “What really happened? Who can tell?” one poem asks, and the many uncertainties surrounding what we know and what we don’t know, together with the difficulties of finding out or facing up to and expressing what has happened / is really happening – that is, of how to live with our knowledge or lack of it – recur in the book as in real-life nightmare or the ethical crises and dilemmas of any one of us.

Then and Now – Words in the Dark (2002): “… an impressive first collection, which must be read right through. The book as a whole is a tour de force, an important debut as well as a promise of riches to come.” Matt Simpson, Stride

From Now to Then [2005] continues an ambitious, serious, subtle, intelligent, humorous, wide-ranging long poem … Both personal and political, metaphysically and psychologically reflective, this is a major on-going work.” Glyn Pursglove, Acumen

Boccaccio in Florence (2009): “A richly layered book. Scrupulous, intent, ambitious… It is the interweaving of life and art … which gives Jackson’s work its authority and fundamental optimism.” Lawrence Sail, The Warwick Review

“… there are many English translations [of Rilke] but none except W.D. Jackson’s that seem entirely satisfying.” Peter McCarey, Choose an Angel and Pick a Fight (2013)