The book is a nice, pocket-book friendly hardcover, with thick, high quality pages, and an elastic to mark the week. The book has a week to a view, with enough room to record (in small writing) activities and appointments for each day (though not enough to write a poem, should you be sufficiently inspired – you’ll need another notebook for that). Each week there is a new poem, starting with Simon Armitage’s “Poetry”, and finishing with Stevie Smith’s “Not Waving Drowning”. The diary also features full colour images of book covers and a Faber poetry chronology.
Lewis is a compassionate, clear-headed witness to heartrending tragedy, but there are many moments of irony and humour here as well. There is plenty of poverty, horror and suffering in these pages; yet there is resilience too. People survive.