Falling Into Place
Jane Routh’s Falling into Place reflects on life enriched by the land she lives with and looks after, alive to her surroundings and fellow creatures. A poet’s ear, a photographer’s eye and dirt under her fingernails make for richly textured lyrical writing, full of detail and insight, precise observation and considered recollection – all so lightly managed and with lovely flashes of humour, it is completely compelling and a joy to read. The book is set in the north west’s Forest of Bowland, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
‘There’s a quite wonderful quality of layering in the observations that make up Jane Routh’s Falling into Place, a journal or Shepherd’s Calendar in prose of a year in the Hindburn valley.It’s a quality that comes of being rooted for many years in one place, preternaturally alert to what’s going on around oneself. Jane Routh’s observations are graced with a poet’s command of language and the ability to weave particulars into memorable passages. Gilbert White and John Clare would find a great deal to delight them in these pages and quickly identify a kindred spirit in their Lancashire neighbour.’ — August Kleinzahler
‘Jane Routh remains a poet. The writing is playful; take for example ‘a quirk of woodland’. Figurative language and a keen sense of sound develop this. In ‘May’, Routh writes of the ‘Horse chestnuts out-classing everything for a couple of days before sinking back into their heavy green.’ A few lines further, Routh describes how her car ‘changes colour […] covered by an even dusting of pale yellow talcum – birch pollen.’ Routh embraces the human world within the natural world and this honesty challenges the often idealistic character of the genre.’ — Stride Magazine