There are Boats on the Orchard

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poems by Maria C. McCarthy, images by Sara Fletcher

Imagine pulling off the road at the height of Summer to a wooden stall at the mouth of an orchard, cherries dripping from the trees. A woman behind the stall shoulders a week-old child. A toddler sits in a playpen beneath the trees. You ask what is in the punnets. Merton Glories, each fruit a yin–yang of yellow and red. Early Rivers, purple red. Autumn brings bulldozers and bonfires, and all that remains is the rusted shell of a burnt-out car and a planning notice.

There are Boats on the Orchard chronicles seven years of living alongside the disappearing orchards of Kent.

PB. 210×115mm. 36pp. Published exclusively by Cultured Llama and only available here. £7.00. July 2017.

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Maria C. McCarthy writes poetry, short stories and memoir. She has an MA in Creative Writing from the University of Kent, and was the winner of the Society of Authors’ Tom-Gallon Trust Award in 2015. After several years of living in the north Kent village of Teynham, where she wrote in a shed looking out on boats on an orchard, she now lives in the Medway Towns, and looks out on boats on the river. Her website is

Sara Fletcher grew up in Kent, and now lives in the village of Halling, a few minutes’ walk from the River Medway. A chartered civil engineer with over twenty years of working for local authorities before setting up her own consultancy, she is also a zoology graduate with a passionate interest in the natural world. Having always enjoyed drawing and painting, as well as a variety of other creative activities, she was delighted to be offered the opportunity to collaborate with Maria McCarthy on There Are Boats on the Orchard.

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