Norman Nicholson was born in 1914 and so I hope there will be many celebrations of his poetry and writing coming up. Apart from the two year bed rest he spent in a sanatorium, Norman lived his whole life in Millom, writing poems both about the fells and the ironworks.
His poems have a honesty and a sometimes shy, sometimes defiant, open handedness about them which makes them very appealing.
His obituary in The Times described Norman as “provincial”. He fought against this term as a put down and defended the label as a valuable, compassionate and humane perspective on life which we all respond to. In his most famous poem, “The Pot Geranium”, he describes the little plant thus: ” “A pot geranium flies its bright balloon … My ways are circumscribed, confined as a limpet / To one small radius of rock; yet / I eat the equator, breathe the sky, and carry / The great white sun in the dirt of my finger nails.” Wow.
© The Trustees of the Estate of Norman Nicholson, by permission of David Higham Associates Limited