A gift is something given, not because the recipient asks for it or because they deserve it – that would make it a special favour, a payment or a reward; rather, gifts are given out of love, for the benefit and well-being of the other, with no expectation of special favour in return. Of course, we don’t always give and receive in the proper spirit, and we can easily overlook the countless gifts in our lives when they don’t come beautifully wrapped and labelled, just in time for Christmas or some other special occasion. Even so, the recognition of life itself as a gift, and the giving and receiving of gifts among friends and neighbours as a way of celebrating and affirming life, is a universal human experience.  

Read a sample selection HERE

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Carver of mountains and soother of wounds; without it, you die, while even a modest excess can leave one lifeless. 71% of the earth is covered in it, while your own body is – so we’re told – nearly two-thirds WATER. At once a powerful symbol of both peace and chaos, permanence and change, we thought Water would make an enticing theme for our second issue. Think of its myriad forms and reflective beauty – a property of its inherent invisibility. Consider its life-giving properties alongside its destructive potential. Water shapes our everyday lives as it has shaped our very planet; yet it is so ubiquitous we hardly miss it, until deprived. For anyone who have known drought or flood, for those who have feared for their lives or found themselves at home in its slippery hold, for all who have contemplated its cosmic significance or simply savoured the pleasure of a thirst quenched on a summer’s day, the theme of Water is bound to arrest the imagination and release a flood of wonderful writing.