Hi Friends and Followers, Recently I was given the opportunity to give a author talk on Zoom, through Randwick City Library in NSW Australia. Even though I was 4,000 km away in Darwin, NT, the TopEnd of Oz, I felt as if I were in the same room as Helene and my guests, who tuned in online through the miracle […]
In his article on the original Capriccio (Ted Hughes Society Journal Vol 8 Issue 2) Steve Ely discusses both the importance of the engravings by Leonard Baskin, and the relevance of Assia Wevill to the poetry. I found this article fascinating in Ely’s description of the collaboration between Hughe and Baskin. However I found it unsympathetic to Assia, describing her […]
www.goodreads.com/review/show/3130338430 I’m humbled and delighted by this review on Goodreads, over a year after publication of ‘Capriccio:A Novel’. So happy readers are still enjoying it.
This poem, re-blogged from whatadriwrites.com/, purported to be written by Assia, expresses succintly the tragic life and death of Assia Gutmann Wevill. Entitled ‘Suicide Sestina’ it begins with a famous couplet by Sylvia Plath, followed by this cry of bitterness and unrequited love from Assia. — Read the poem here: http://www.whatadriwrites.com/?p=9
Some reviews of my first edition of Capriccio: A Novel: eBook: Dina Davis: Amazon.com.au: Books — Read on www.amazon.com.au/Capriccio-Novel-Dina-Davis-ebook/dp/B07GGFXX9G/ref=sr_1_2_twi_kin_1
‘To value a piece of work does not require us to applaud its creator.” (Ashleigh Wilson, On Artists, MUP, 2019) Or does it? Do we have to love the artist to love the work? Think of Pablo Picasso, Roman Polanski, Woody Allen. All can be judged as having questionable morals. If, like me, you’ve always enjoyed movies such as Allen’s […]
This is an abridged version of the article by Eilat Negev, which inspired me to write the story of Assia Gutmann Wevill as a work of fiction.
I’ve had the privilege recently of attending a course on the ancient texts of the Kabbalah, presented by Rabbi Dr. Orna Triguboff. These mystical teachings have long been a fascination of mine, particularly after I discovered, while researching my novel ‘Capriccio’, about the poet Ted Hughes, that he drew inspiration and poetic imagery from the texts of Kabbalah. Our talks with Rabbi […]
This review by Mark Ford of ‘Ted Hughes: the Unauthorised Life’ by Jonathan Bates, gives an interesting slant on Bate’s book, and echoes much of the portrayal of Hughes’s remorse in my novel: ‘Capriccio: the Haunting of Sylvia Plath.‘ In March 1969 Assia gassed both herself and her four-year-old daughter by Hughes, Shura, in her flat in Clapham. She had grown tired of sharing Hughes with his two women down in Devon, Brenda Hedden (a social worker) and Carol Orchard, a local farmer’s daughter and nurse, who would become his second wife. Hughes did, on occasion, explicitly question the implications of his … behaviour in his private journal, noting, for instance, of this particular erotic triangle: ‘3 beautiful women – all in love, and a separate life of joy visible with each, all possessed – but own soul lost.’ The sorrows of the polygamist … As the errant poet struggled to manage his handily alphabetised commitments to A, B and C, as he referred to them in his journal, Assia battled with the complexities of the situation in which she found herself after Plath’s suicide. Although less jealous and possessive than Plath, Assia had her own moments of despair and fury: in a will she made in April 1968 she left to Hughes only ‘my no doubt welcome absence and my bitter contempt.’ Hughes’s ‘The Error’, from the suite of Assia poems collected in Capriccio (1990), presents her subsequent death as almost […]
Assia Wevill, born Assia Esther Gutmann, would have been 89 years old today, had she not taken her own life and that of her daughter Shura in March 1969. She was 41 when she died: 41 years, reflected in the 41 chapters in my novel, ‘Capriccio’, which endeavours to honour her short life. Who was the real Assia? Was […]