By Derek Healy
In Made Strange By Time Derek Healy explored the legacy of the past, while in Home he reflected on the base from which all our journeys, real and metaphorical, spring. Now, in Uncharted, he focuses on uncertainty and times ahead. The poems touch on many unknowns – our expanding universe and humankind’s future within it; the outcome of the Covid-19 pandemic; the open question of our own personal trajectories and ambitions; and the ‘unchartedness’ of trying to write.
Here is a rich variety of material and style, making this an enlivening and, above all, eminently readable collection.
In Uncharted Derek Healy brings together poems of joy and wit, the marvels of the extent of our universe, a lament for – and celebration of – the ageing process, pandemic frustrations, and all the wonder that is human life. His powers of observation ensure that every poem is distinct and vivid, a nugget of truth to be touched, examined, and stored away in the treasure chest of memory. The reader . . . can embark on the Uncharted voyage with the certain hope of reaching safe harbour, enriched and invigorated by the journey.
(Alison Chisholm, poet and editor)
You’re in for a treat with this sometimes enchanting, sometimes thought-provoking, and always lyrical poetry. Healy’s poems take us to the cosmos, to the countryside, to children growing up; this is a medley of communication tiered with aims, wants and emotion.
Whether digging potatoes, revamping a house, pondering pestilence, or other uncharted areas, Healy’s words will resonate.
(Polly Stretton, poet and chair of the Open University Poetry Society)
Whether deploying form with a clever twist, or writing free verse, Derek Healy writes beautifully. Lyrically rich, vividly imagistic, poignant and moving, his poems stay with you long after their reading.
(Anna Saunders, poet and CEO of Cheltenham Poetry Festival)