Dead Man Provenance/Journey to Ki

I have just uploaded to Kindle a new, revised and updated e-version of Dead Man Provenance (, the magazine story first published in The Paris Review, which formed the basis of my book, The Poet & The Murderer. It tells the story of a forged Emily Dickinson poem that turns up mysteriously at Sotheby’s. As I investigate its provenance, I stumble on a story stranger than fiction – a story of forged Mormon documents, deception and murder. At the centre of the story is the brilliant, amoral Mark Hofmann, a disgruntled Mormon, who tries to do what no one has ever done before: bring down a major world religion using forgery. And ends up killing two innocent people with bomb bombs.

The next story I will publish on Kindle is called Journey to Ki. It, too, concerns religion and spirituality – but in a completely different sense. It is the story of my journey up the Spiti Valley in India’s Himachel Pradesh province, to the ancient monastery of Ki, which at well over 15,000 ft. is the highest in the world. Ki lies behind The Inner Line, a militarised buffer zone on the a remote India-Tibet border. As a result of this, the ancient, Tibetan Buddhist culture that has existed there for a thousand years has been preserved, like a bee in amber, in a way that it has not been in Tibet itself, thanks to the predations of the Beijing government. Journey to Ki is also a journey inwards, as I encounter the philosophy and practices of Tibetan Buddhism.

About sworrall

Writer with @Natgeo; author of The Poet and The Murderer; and the forthcoming Starcrossed: A Romeo And Juliet Story in Hitler's Paris (2022)

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