‘Today, I shall have a few guests, Madame Sand amongst them.’

It’s December 1836, Paris. Chopin is living on the fashionable rue de la Chaussée d’Antin and the novelist George Sand on the rue Lafitte. But falling in love with Sand also meant falling in love with her ancestral home, Nohant, a manor house set deep in the Berry countryside.

Nocturnes at Nohant is a thematic collection which takes the relationship between George Sand and Frédéric Chopin as its focus. We hear not only from Chopin and Sand, but also a rich cast of supporting characters who debate, in their sometimes humorous and often surprising way, the relationship between words and music, place and creativity, and the nature of the creative process itself. The powerful love story which threads the sequence together involves spending time not only in rural France, but also Warsaw, Paris, Majorca and Venice.


Praise for Nocturnes at Nohant:
The Decade of Chopin and Sand

Nocturnes at Nohant seems to me to be an original extremely intelligent working through of a complex relationship between two fine, elusive people, artists and their work. I loved the poems.It works so well as a story and is so nuanced I felt completely absorbed in it. And full of admiration for [Farish’s] great skill.Melvyn Bragg

This artful and assured collection charts the 10 year relationship…between the Polish composer Chopin and the French novelist George Sand. ..The poems tell a credible tale in which passion, domesticity and creativity jostle for space and feed off on another. In the final section of the collection, as love loses its lustre, so too does Chopin’s health and the tone changes accordingly as his early death is foretold: ‘history / (the unseen enemy) was arranging / for the ground-floor room he will die in / to one day be entered by women wishing to buy face cream.’ Sometimes light-hearted and sometimes solemn, the potency of these poems lies in their beautifully observed detailsPoetry Book Society

‘Can you be cuckolded by a dead composer / and his city of the imagination?’ Helen Farish, in this thematic sequence of 55 poems about Frédéric Chopin and his lover George Sand, poses and answers that question in a sustained feat of imaginative recreationKeith RichmondTribune Magazine

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