Wednesday 2 March 2022

After Ithaca - Voyages in Deep Time to be published this May!

A pile of seeds, a tuft of wool, a vessel of water, a closed box 

What happens when the heroes disappear, when the battle for the city is over, when you return to the island and find a box in your hands? There was an instruction once that told us why the box should never be opened. But you don't believe those stories anymore. You always open the box. 

After Ithaca is a non-fiction work – part memoir, part essay, part travelogue – that follows a real life journey of descent in a world on the tip of crisis. It is set in the Peruvian rainforest, in the backrooms of Suffolk towns, in Japan, in France, Australia, in the desert borderlands, in borrowed houses and Occupy tents, in kitchens and burial chambers, underneath a lemon tree on an abandoned terrace… 

The book revolves around the four initiatory tasks of Psyche, set by Venus, the goddess of love and justice: four territories that map this search for meaning and coherence in a time of fall. Each chapter starts with a memory of place as a clue to the investigation: the recovery of a relationship with wild nature, with being human, a kind of archaeology for the pieces of self that lie missing beneath a broken storyline, like the sherds of a pot. 

It is a personal story and also a social story, about the relinquishment of a certain world, that looks at writing as an existential practice: showing how myth can be a techĂȘ for finding our lost voice, our medicine of how to put a crooked thing straight. 

How to pull ourselves out of the wreckage, and start again

After Ithaca with Loss Soup and Other Stories by Nick Hunt are Dark Mountain's first fiction and non-fiction single author titles. Published by Greenbank Books on 15th May 2022 and available in UK, US, Canada and Australia.