Jo Shapcott wen Costaprys vir poësie

Jo Shapcott

Jo Shapcott

Verlede week is dit bekend gemaak dat die Walliese digter, Jo Shapcott, se bundel Of Mutability met die Costa Poetry Award 2010 bekroon is. Volgens PressZoom se persverklaring bestaan die bundel uit “a collection of poems that explore the nature of change, both in the body and the natural world as well as in human interaction. It celebrates the small wonders of life, acting as a reminder of its transience. “

Volgens die beoordelaars se commendatio, die volgende: “Of Mutability consists of a collection of poems that explore the nature of change, both in the body and the natural world as well as in human interaction. It celebrates the small wonders of life, acting as a reminder of its transience.”

Jo Shapcott is natuurlik ‘n veelbekroonde digter wat allerweë beskou word as een van Brittanje se mees gerespekteerde talente. Tans is sy ‘Professor of Creating Writing’ by Royal Holloway aan die Universiteit van Londen verbonde. Ook is sy die teenswoordige president van die Poetry Society en by Poetry Archive is daar ‘n onderhoud wat met haar gevoer was, wat gelees kan word.

Wat my egter in my gesnuffel op die internet na meer inligting oor dié onderwerp opgeval het, is Kate Kellaway se resensie van Of Mutability op The Guardian se webblad.  Hiervolgens word dit waaroor die verse handel (kanker) nooit by die naam genoem nie: “Cancer is not mentioned – never dignified with a name. It is characteristic of Shapcott to avoid the banality of straight autobiography. Instead, her illness exists as an anarchic rabble of cells in the body of her texts: ‘Too many of the best cells in my body / are itching, feeling jagged, turning raw / in this spring chill…” […] Shapcott is interested in where the body begins and ends, the extent to which we overspill boundaries and become more than figures in a landscape – a permeable part of what we see.”

Dit is egter veral Kellaway se opmerking ten opsigte van Shapcott se taalgebruik wat ek vanoggend aan jou wil voorhou: “Shapcott is interested in non-verbal perception. She reminds us that language is the greatest agent of change. As we seize on one word rather than another, we transform our experience and discard alternative accounts. There is a small coppice of poems about trees. In ‘Cypress‘, she describes touching the tree’s bark. Then she writes: ‘Before all this, / the scent, which is anti-language / (only, as it drifts into your body/the words slip in, as well).’ She makes us see that we are all translators. Words come second.”

Nou ja, toe. Heelonder volg daar ‘n gedig uit Of Mutability vir jou leesplesier.

***

Sedert Vrydag is Carina Stander se fotobeeld geplaas; so ook die onderhoud wat met Louis Jansen van Vuuren gevoer is na aanleiding van sy debuutbundel Tempermes wat einde verlede jaar verskyn het. Aan die blogkant van sake is ‘n fotogedig deur Andries Bezuidenhout om te geniet. En nog is het einde niet: in die gedigtekamers is daar nuwe verse deur Bernard Odendaal, Trienke Laurie, Marius Crous en Joan Hambidge wat almal ‘n móét lees is.

Ten slotte maak ons graag bekend dat Andries Samuel se debuutbundel, wanpraktyk, het einde verlede week by die boekwinkels aangeland het. Inderdaad ‘n jubeltyd vir ons digkuns die komende maande. Gaan kyk gerus solank by Publikasies watter ander bundels ook nog almal vóór einde Februarie op die rakke gaan wees …

Geniet die week wat op hande is.

Mooi bly.

LE

 

Procedure

This tea, this cup of tea, made of leaves,

made of the leaves of herbs and absolute

almond blossom, this tea, is the interpreter

of almond, liquid touchstone which lets us

scent its true taste at last and with a bump

in my case, takes me back to the yellow time

of trouble with bloodtests, and cellular

madness, and my presence required

on the slab for surgery, and all that mess

I don’t want to comb through here because

it seems, honestly, a trifle now that steam

and scent and strength and steep and infusion

say thank you thank you thank you for the then, and now

 

© Jo Shapcott (Uit: Of Mutability, 2010: Faber & Faber)

 

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