Louis Esterhuizen. Helen Ivory – In afwagting op Bloubaard

Vroeër vanjaar het Marcelle Olivier ‘n belangwekkende onderhoud met die digterspaar Helen Ivory (foto) en Martin Figura op Versindaba geplaas. En watter vreugde was dié ontdekking nie, want nie een van dié twee se digkuns was vir my bekend nie. Van veral Helen Ivory se gedigte het ek sommer baie gehou; daarom dat ek die oorsig deur Katy Evans-Bush van Ivory se digwerk wat onlangs op Poetry International verskyn het, my in die besonder sou interesseer.

Evans-Bush open haar oorsig deur Ivory se poësie soos volg te tipeer: “Written on the wide canvas of the everyday, her poems create small, eerie resonances in the spaces just beyond what happens.” Ter verdere ondersteuning van haar standpunt word die poësie-kenner, James Sutherland, aangehaal:” “A visually precise poet, with the gift of creating stunning images with an economy of means . . . Her poems are like mobiles suspended on invisible threads, charming to watch as they seem to spin by themselves in the air, but capable of administering more than a paper cut on the sensibility of the reader.”

Ivory, wat sedert 1990 al in Norwich saam met haar man, Martin Fugura, woon het al drie digbundels gepubliseer, te wete: The Double Life of Clocks, (2002: Bloodaxe) The Dog in the Sky (2006: Bloodaxe) en The Breakfast Machine (2010: Bloodaxe).

Volgens Evans-Bush is een van die hoofkenmerke van Ivory se werkswyse die manier waarop sy tyd en ruimte laat disintegreer ten einde ‘n vervloeing van grense te bewerkstellig. By wyse van illustrasie haal sy dan enkele reëls aan uit die gedigte “The Tooth Mouse” en “The Breakfast Machine“:

“Time collapses, space expands and contracts, everything is somehow animate. Poems like ‘The Tooth Mouse’ draw on well-known folklore to create a disjointed view of the everyday world.
 
                  All of the teeth
brought by the Tooth Mouse
are piled high in an out-of-town
warehouse . . .

 
(‘The Tooth Mouse’, from The Breakfast Machine, 2010)
 
In ‘Sleep’, from The Breakfast Machine, an entire house falls asleep around a woman who seems to congeal:
 
Even the walls have relaxed
and the roof is too tired
to hold up the weight of the sky.

Inderdaad kan ‘n mens nie anders as om met Evans-Bush akkoord te gaan wanneer sy haar oorsig afsluit met die volgende stelling nie: “Ivory takes a direct approach, via deep folklore and dream imagery, to the conundrum of being a woman . . . in keeping with what I think we mean when we say ‘women’s writing’; mischievously dark, rich with anti-logic and harnessed to the power of something we used to call magic.”

Maar, gaan lees gerus die volledige teks by Poetry International Web. Daar is ook heelwat gedigte van Helen Ivory was geniet kan word. En – indien jy dit gemis het – Marcelle Olivier se onderhoud is ‘n móét lees. (Terloops, die vers wat ek vanoggend hieronder aanhaal, is die titelgedig uit Ivory se bundel wat volgende jaar gaan verskyn.)

***

WAITING FOR BLUEBEARD

 

The child in the garden wears a coat
collaged from the skins of paper,
sutured with lengths of my hair.
I am inside the house
in a matching coat.
 
There is no one to tell us not to;
called here, as we were
by the halloo of peacocks
who turned tail
the day we arrived.
 
We are waiting for Bluebeard,
and when he happens here
in his grey-silver car,
he will unleash wolves
like rain.


 
© 2012, Helen Ivory
Gepubliseer deur Poetry International, 2012

 

 

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Een Kommentaar op “Louis Esterhuizen. Helen Ivory – In afwagting op Bloubaard”

  1. Baie dankie vir die insetsel en die skakel na die onderhoud. Net wat ek nodig gehad het om te lees tydens hierdie rustelose aand.

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