By Mark Isherwood
Lethe was initially inspired by teaching Keats and preparing to teach Virgil. In particular the passages of the Aeniad based in the underworld and Keats' Ode to a Nightingale. The treatment of Lethe in both texts opened up creative possibilities around the notion of memory which serves as the connecting element which binds the 48 pieces together. The poet is a practicing Orthodox Christian and this forms the fundaments of the spiritual voice evident in many of the poems.