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I am Frida but also I am not Frida. I am her paintings and the nature of her love. I am her shadow. I am many women, I answer to many names, any who knows grief. I am all the phases of the moon, I am all her qualities. I am El Duende, I am the light of the psyche, writing from my soul, speaking to the psyche of humanity, the psyche which is shaped like the wings of a butterfly or a moth; fly closer, fly nearer to me.
A Love Letter from a Stray Moon is a fictionalised portrait of the intense and prolific life of Frida Kahlo. In beautifully lyrical language, Jay Griffiths explores the artist's childhood polio, her devastating accident and her turbulent relationship with Diego Rivera, painting a vivid and unique picture of passion, grief and transcendence.
Set against the backdrop of revolutionary Mexico, A Love Letter from a Stray Moon is partly a poetic depiction of a woman in flight from the hollowness of childlessness, the burning of betrayal and the constraints of physical pain. It is also a celebration of rebellion - from Frida's own politics to the present-day Zapatistas - and a hymn to the revolutionary fire at the heart of art.
'A wonderful book. It's like a dress that Kahlo invented for herself and wore' John Berger 'A rich and extraordinary vision. Jay Griffiths is a fearless adventurer with words and images. I salute her courage and the splendour of this vision' Philip Pullman 'An extraordinarily beautiful and sustained prose poem, a call for engagement with the world, and a powerful and astonishing feat of literary and retroactive telepathy. It is a book about possession, in many forms, each of which is sparked by a particular urgency: to comprehend, to celebrate and to endure' Niall Griffiths 'Frida Kahlo's life and work were indivisible, and with a power worthy of her subject Jay Griffiths has found a way of writing Kahlo's broken, prolific life. Through Griffiths we hear the voice of Frida Kahlo herself, as if she were speaking directly to us. I devoured this wonderfully perceptive and sensitive book' Marie Darrieussecq 'A stunning allegory about love, art and revolution. She makes every word, every scene, in this passionate narrative count. It's brilliant work' Barry Lopez 'Vivid as a bloom in the jungle, visionary as a flight over a desert, a love song to life on earth' Joan London 'A love letter to human originality' Melanie Challenger 'I found in Griffiths's writing a crafted freedom that feels made from the mist of dreams and a very real emerging dawn. Imagine being held in the open hand of moonlight and carried through a dream into day. This is what it is like to read A Love Letter from a Stray Moon. It is a book for men to read on women and for women to read on men. I am transported and transformed; I feel lucky to have read it and it leaves me in awe' Lemn Sissay Jay Griffiths is the author of Pip Pip: A Sideways Look at Time and Wild: An Elemental Journey. She is the winner of the inaugural Orion Book Award and of the Barnes & Noble DiscoverAward for the best new non-fiction writer to be published in the USA. She has also been shortlisted for the Orwell Prize and a World Book Day award.
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