Wild Gooseberries of Hailung

Wild Gooseberries of Hailung - front coverPublished by Indigo Dreams - available from the Indigo Dreams website

The collection arises out of the poet’s recent visits to Northern China (the former Manchuria), where her father had served as a missionary in the years before WW2. The long overland journey by train via Siberia, Mongolia and Beijing serves as a device linking past and present, here and there. This is the same route that carried letters between her young father and his parents back in Ireland, letters which, already published, are now a template for the journey the poetry makes, exploring relationship, memory, religion.

“Thompson has crossed continents, both physically and emotionally, in her moving exploration of her relationship with her missionary father. The poems are by no means hermetic and the tautness of her writing prevents any self-indulgence.”
- Ruth O’Callaghan 

“From Donegal to Manchuria, Frances Corkey Thompson's poetry explores roots, religion and language.” - Sam Smith (Editor, The Journal). 

“Old long-forgotten letters became a book that stimulated BBC documentaries, and now a poetry collection. Frances Corkey Thompson has ensured that the past will not ‘fly forgotten as a dream’.” - Rev. John Dunlop CBE. 

These concise and transparent poems weave the two places, Ireland and China, into a landscape in which the child and the adult merge. The poems blow the reader’s heart like a breeze, gently and softly, so they are so close to the daily life of common people.” - 崔波, Cui Bo, PhD, Zhejiang.

“Deep emotions are evoked in these reflective poems.” - Mark O’Neill, veteran journalist, SCMP, Hong Kong