Louis Esterhuizen. Jo Shapcott ontvang Koningin se medalje

Verlede week is dit bekend gemaak dat die Britse Koningin se goue medalje vir poësie vir 2011 aan die immergewilde Jo Shapcott (foto) toegeken word. Vroeër is haar mees onlangse bundel, On Mutabilit, ook met die Costa  “boek-van-die-jaar” toekenning vereer.

Volgens The Guardian se berig bestaan die paneel van beoordelaars uit “eminent men and women of letters” wat deur die poet laureate, Carol Ann Duffy saamgestel word. Duffy het na Shapcott se verering verwys as “the true crowning” van ‘n veelbekroonde loopbaan waaronder die National Poetry Competition (twee keer), die Commonwealth Poetry Award en die Forward Poetry Prize gereken kan word.

Tydens die aankondiging het Duffy onder andere melding gemaak van die “calm but sparkling Englishness” wat Shapcott se digkuns kenmerk; ‘n digkuns “that manages to combine accessibility with a deeply cerebral engagement with all the facets of being human – alert to art and science, life and death. Her peers will be very proud and happy for her today,” het sy bygevoeg.

Hieronder volg ‘n gedig deur Jo Shapcott.

***

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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