Kate Bush will pay tribute to Emily Brontë with a new literary piece, coming 40 years after her Brontë-inspired Wuthering Heights.
Bush released Wuthering Heights in 1978. It was inspired by Brontë’s novel of the same name and the fact that Bush and the third-eldest Brontë sister share a birthday (July 30).
The music icon has now been commissioned, along with poet laureate Carol Ann Duffy, Scottish national poet Jackie Kay and novelist Jeanette Winterson, to write a piece of poetry or prose about one of the Brontë sisters for an inscription.
The work, commissioned by Bradford literature festival, will be engraved on stones, which will be placed across the route between the sisters’ birthplace in Thornton and the Brontë family home/parsonage in Haworth, Yorkshire. They will be unveiled in July.
Bush has said of the news: “Each sister being remembered by a stone in the enigmatic landscape where they lived and worked is a striking idea.”
“Emily only wrote the one novel – an extraordinary work of art that has truly left its mark. To be asked to write a piece for Emily’s stone is an honour and, in a way, a chance to say thank you to her.”
Festival director Syima Aslam told BBC News: “We felt that Kate would be a great person to write about Emily Bronte. She’s such an icon and so much of her work references literature, so it felt like she would be the perfect person to respond to Emily and write something for the stone.”
“We saw it as such a good fit, but equally we were, ‘she might just say no’. But you won’t know unless you ask… and she said yes, which was tremendously exciting.”
The reclusive singer returned for a 22-date ‘Before The Dawn’ residency at London’s Hammersmith Apollo in 2014, her first full live shows in 35 years.
Speaking about her lengthy hiatus from the stage, Bush told The Independent: “It wasn’t designed that way, because I really enjoyed the first set of shows we did [in 1979]. The plan at the time was that I was going to do another two albums’ worth of fresh material, and then do another show.”
She continued: “But of course, by the time I got to the end of what was The Dreaming album, it had gone off on a slight tilt, because I’d become so much more involved in the recording process.”