This is a link to the second review of Enchanting the Shadowlands, which is by James Nichol. James lives in Stroud in Gloucestershire and is involved in a group and runs a blog focusing on ‘contemplative spiritual practice within modern Druidry.’ He published an anthology called Contemplative Druidry in 2014.

This is the first book I’ve published and it’s both fascinating and nerve wracking to hear other peoples’ feedback. In this review I was delighted to hear my poetry described as ‘numinous’ and loved the fact James saw ‘a large shaggy hound’ leading the way in ‘A Journeying Song’ and was moved by my brown-eared hound story.

James is also a reader and supporter of Bardic and Pagan poetry and has recently introduced me to The Misfortunes of Elphin by Thomas Love Peacock, which forms a 19th century re-working of the myths of Elphin, Maelgwyn and Taliesin and is formally interesting in its’ mixture of poetry, prose and dramatic dialogue.

I’m very grateful to James for this generous review and a link to a significant book.


In formal terms, this is a five star review of Enchanting the Shadowlands, a book of numinous poems and short stories by Lorna Smithers. She describes it as “gathered from my local landscape in response to an imperative from a Brythonic god called Gwyn ap Nudd”. If you have any interest in the lingering subtle resonance of the old Celtic and pre-Celtic world in parts of England like the poet’s native northwest, you will appreciate this volume. If you have any interest in ‘awen’ as an inspirational force or creative current, and what it is to be ‘awenydd’, you will appreciate this volume. If you have any interest in poetry and landscape, or what is now called psycho-geography, you are likely to appreciate this volume. I strongly recommend this book.

More deeply, I am hoping in a small way to share something of the magic of the work as I…

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