It is in the midst of a swirling river, casting a line, that Mark Wormald meets Ted Hughes.
He stands where the poet stood, forty years ago, because fishing was Ted Hughes’s way of breathing – and because the poet’s writing has made Mark understand that it has always been his way of breathing, too.
Using Hughes’s collection of poems, River, and his fishing diaries as a guide, Mark returns again and again to the places where the poet fished. At times, he uses Ted’s fly patterns; at others his rods. It is an obsession; a fundamental connection to nature; a thrilling wildness; an elemental pursuit. But it is also a release and a consolation, as Mark fishes after the sudden death of his mother and during the slow fading of his father.
A brilliant blend of memoir and biography, The Catch is a stunning meditation on poetry and nature, and a quiet reflection on what it means to be a father and a son.