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Carla Fergus-Lee (2nd from left) speaks about the new collection from Sir Howard Fergus on Live at PRIME on Saturday, July 22, 2023.

Now the Day is Over – A New Collection from the Late Sir Howard Fergus Released at PRIME 2023

Visitors to PRIME – the Produced in Montserrat Expo were privileged to get first copies of Now the Day is Over, a new collection from the late Sir Howard A. Fergus, who passed away on March 23, 2023.

Ironically, the launch day at PRIME on July 22, would have been his 86th birthday shared his daughter Carla Fergus-Lee, who represented Fergus Publications, Ltd., the publishers of the new work.

Mrs. Fergus-Lee said her father made it a lot easier to release his final collection than she anticipated. “When I opened the laptop the preface was there with the title. The only thing we did was decide on the cover art.”

The new collection has 81 poems in four sections – Now the Day is Over, On my Mind, The English, and Occasional/Writing from Glendon.

Carla Fergus-Lee

In his preface, Dr. Fergus noted that “the name of this book and its title poem Now the Day is Over are not meant to suggest finality, although you never know. We sang it to close at Bethel School and to send us on our way home again. In this book it does suggest evening time and the ending of one’s life-work, writing not necessarily omitted, albeit with a sense of gratitude. It gives notice.

“When we were growing up people used to give notice of dying: they were said to be “on dying”, or even “travelling”. Today there seems to be no dying manners; Ever so often now, you just hear that someone passed whatever the age. You are surprised to hear that their day was literally over,” he wrote in the preface.

Photo of Now the Day is Over by the late Sir Howard A. Fergus

The section called On My Mind, he noted “suggests what seems to be the most popular radio programme “What’s on Your Mind” which does not focus on mundane matters like legislators’ salaries but comes up with its own including pensions, the healthcare system, and acknowledges the brutal cost of living. It allows for new allusions such as the British skill at brainwashing and new national stories. One such story was that of Walter Wade (Wally Wade) a Montserratian who went from minus to millions in Nevis and Montserrat and was also a benefactor. Yet, not even a rabbit hutch bears his name. Other interesting matters including masquerade were on my mind.”

The former Speaker of the House gave space for thoughts on The English and “their sordid sagas of questionable truths of the Prime Minister partying in Covid and the serious political consequences. The multiple resignations in a short time including Liz Truss made history until Indian Sunak who seem to be holding on in spite of the negatives with which they clothed him.”

“The Occasional section is co-titled Writing from Glendon because the poem is somewhat of a major entry and the whole notion of the day being over was birthed in Glendon Hospital where I spent more time than envisaged and was influenced somewhat by hospital culture,” the prolific author of more than 40 books noted.  “The book ends with a piece that touched on personal life while at the same time resonates the main focus.”

Now the Day is Over is also available on Amazon in Kindle and print.