A deafblind poet from Blackpool has realised her lifelong dream to become a published writer.
Di Wade, who also suffers from Antley Bixler syndrome – a rare multiple congenital condition – has published an anthology of her poems chronicling her reactions to the changing of the seasons.
In A Year in Verse: The Modern Pastoral Tales of Di Wade, she celebrates the sights, sounds and smells of life – despite being registered blind, hearing-impaired and in her own words, “Could not smell a skunk at ten paces.”
The book will raise money for charities Deafblind UK and Guide Dogs For the Blind, and a big launch party took place at the Red Lion, in Bispham.
Di was born and brought up in South Shore, “within walking distance of the Pleasure Beach, through which I loved to stroll with my family on warm summer evenings.” Di attended a boarding school for the visually-impaired in Coventry.
She said: “I love much about Blackpool, in particular the proximity to the sea, the miles and miles of exhilarating walking afforded by its wide Promenade and the Illuminations, which with my limited sight I find especially captivating and have never lost their magic.
“My home town is responsible for many of the pieces in my book, which is liberally strewn with proprietorial references to the Tower, the Comedy Carpet and wild, dramatic waves. I am very proud to come from Blackpool.
“This book has been 20 years in the making. It mirrors my heart and soul and the pleasures, indulgences, amusements and gratifications life has to offer, regardless of one’s situation.
“I find joy in the simplest of things and the most challenging. I’m at my happiest when I’m travelling and tussling with the demands of a new country I’m visiting, or the simplest delights such as listening to sport on the radio, with a roaring fire, in front of my computer, writing.
“I have long-considered it my duty to shatter every stereotype associated with my ‘afflictions’, and would encourage everyone to do likewise, at whatever point they are at in their life’s journey.
“The ideas for my poems strike as uncontrollably as hailstones, and can arise from anything from a TV programme, the crunch of autumn leaves in Stanley Park or a chance remark from a colleague – I have to try and retain the idea until I can get to a computer.
“It is my lifelong dream to become an established writer. However, this book is a gift from a friend, who, having quietly kept two decades worth of my poetic scribblings, stunned me by transforming these into a marvellous e-book, Kindle and special collectors’ hardback edition in order that they might reach as wide an audience as possible. I am pleased to divide all proceeds between Deafblind UK and Guide Dogs For The Blind, two charities of special significance to me.”
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