Soliloquy For Pan Edited by Mark Beech. Book review

Soliloquy For Pan Edited by Mark Beech, Egaeus Books, h/b, £35

Reviewed by Matthew Johns

Limited to just 300 copies, this latest from Egaeus is a stunning tome filled with tales of, and inspired by the Greek god of the wild, Pan.  Beings with the hindquarters, legs and horns of a goat abound, playing music from their syrinx (pan pipes) while bewitching humans and animals alike.

This is a real mixture of prose – some poems (“A Magical Invocation of Pan” by Dion Fortune, “Pan With Us” by Robert Frost), some that feel like historical essays exploring the meaning of Pan (“The Rebirthing of Pan” by Adrian Ecklersley, “The Role of Pan in Ritual, Magic and Poetry” by Dian Champigny, “Faun and Flora: A Garden for the Goat-God Pan” by Sheryl Humphrey), even a short by Robert Louis Stevenson (yes, that Robert Louis Stevenson) entitled “Pan’s Pipes”.

Some are longer than others – in “The Secret Woods” by Lynda E. Rucker, Diana returns to her home to visit family.  A bit of a wild-child with a disturbed past, and a history of playing with Pan, she finds it hard to settle down and relate to people who haven’t experienced life with Pan.

A fascinating collection of tales, all of varying lengths, styles and genres, there is something for everyone within these pages.