Roger Deakin on Iain Sinclair

Iain Sinclair has been writing about King’s Cross and St Pancras, and Aidan Dun. He returns yet again to Dun’s 1955* poem ‘Vale Royal‘ about Blake’s vision of St Pancras as a sacred place, a centre of energy, with St Pancras, the boy martyr, presiding over it, with Mary Wollstonecraft buried there, and Thomas Hardy’s ash tree rising, growing out of a rubble of gravestones like a stack of books in a bookshop. A tree rising out of the dead – Yggdrasil, the world tree, a great symbol of life in the face of the developers who have been under criticism for expunging this place ever since Dickens wrote his great passage on the coming of the railway to Camden in Dombey and Son.”

Roger Deakin ‘Notes from Walnut Tree Farm (pub 2009) – written some time 2000-2006

*Note: Vale Royal by Aidan Dun was published in 1995 not 1955.