Saturday, December 14, 2013

Ten Key Moments in English Language Poetry in 2013 (As per Eyewear)



1. GEOFFREY HILL PUBLISHES HIS COLLECTED POEMS.

2. SEAMUS HEANEY DIES.

3. HER MAJESTY THE QUEEN INVITES HUNDREDS OF POETS TO BUCKINGHAM PALACE.

4. POETRY MAGAZINE IN AMERICA GETS A NEW EDITOR.

5. CHARLES BERNSTEIN PUBLISHES RECALCULATING.

6. HELEN MORT SHORTLISTED FOR TS ELIOT PRIZE AND THE COSTA.

7. PATRICIA SMITH WINS THE LENORE MARSHALL POETRY PRIZE.

8. MATTHEW DICKMAN ARRIVES IN UK ON TWO LEADING MAGAZINE COVERS IN ONE MONTH.

9. DAVID SHOOK TRIES TO GET A POETRY DRONE OFF THE GROUND.

10. EMILY BERRY DEBUTS WITH FABER.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Bizarre Poets

Bizarre Poets#1- William McGonagall read his poems while the crowd was permitted to pelt him with eggs, flour, herrings, potatoes and stale bread. For this, he received fifteen shillings a night. McGonagall seemed happy with this arrangement, but the events became so raucous that the city magistrates were forced to put a ban on them.

Bizarre Poets#2 On 2 March 1882, Roderick Maclean, a disgruntled poet apparently offended by Queen Victoria's refusal to accept one of his poems, shot at the Queen as her carriage left Windsor railway station.

Abhay K reading his poems at historical Patan Durbar Sqaure


































Pic by Prakash Subedi

Friday, November 29, 2013

Abhay K. & Arundhati Subramaniam at South Asian Poetry Festival 2013, Kathmandu























Poets at the South Asian Poetry Festival: Abhay K, Arundhathi Subramaniam, Bairangi Kaila, Bhuwan Dhungana, Chirag Bangdel, Deepa Rai, Gopilal Acharya, Greta Rana, Mohammad Nurul Huda, Naseer Ahmad Nasir, Prakash Subedi, Sachendra Manandhar, Siddhartha Rai, Snehlata Rai, Shrawan Mukarung, Ujjawala Maharjan, Usha Sherchan, Yan Thulung, Yukta Bajracharya

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Poet-diplomat Abhay K. pens first ever South Asian Anthem

After the success of the Earth Anthem, which has been translated into major world languages, Indian poet-diplomat Abhay K. is ready with the first ever South Asian Anthem.
In the history of South Asia, after the establishment of the South Asian University, a South Asian Anthem, a song that all South Asians could sing together, if adopted by , it would be a major catalyst in fostering deeper South Asian consciousness.  Read more at

Indian poet-diplomat pens S.Asian anthem after Earth anthem success - Business Standard

Saturday, November 2, 2013

T.S. Eliot Prize Nominations 2013: Poets & Poems

T.S. Eliot Prize in Poetry is one of the most coveted and well known prizes in poetry awarded every year. At present, the prize is £15,000, with each of nine runners-up receiving £1000 each.

T.S. Eliot Image source: Wikimedia Commons

2013 Nominations for the prize include George Szirtes, Robin Robertson, Helen Mort, Dannie Abse, Moniza Albi, Anne Carson, Sinéad Morrissey, Daljit Nagra, Michael Symmons Roberts and Maurice Rioardan. The judges are Ian Duhig, Vicki Feaver and Imtiaz Dharker.


George Szirtes, born in 1948 is a Hungarian-born British poet, writing in English, as well as a translator from the Hungarian language into English. He has lived in the United Kingdom for most of his life. Born in Budapest on 29 November 1948, Szirtes came to England as a refugee in 1956 aged 8. He was brought up in London and studied Fine Art in London and LeedsHis poems began appearing in national magazines in 1973 and his first book, The Slant Door, was published in 1979. It won the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize the following year.He has won a variety of prizes for his work, most recently the 2004 T. S. Eliot Prize, for his collection Reel and the Bess Hokin Prize for poems in Poetry magazine, 2008. His translations from Hungarian poetry, fiction and drama have also won numerous awards. ( Source :Wikipedia)

Kolár: Housing Estate

BY GEORGE SZIRTES
What you cannot see through those windows
beyond the bare hill
is the hand resting on the table,
is the man lying still
on the bed, is the vague gesture
of  the young woman in the hallway
as she remembers something that happened yesterday,
is the mouse hesitating under the draining board,
is the twelve year old boy putting on a record
of  Wiener Blut that he once saw
his parents waltzing to.


All that you see is the all-but-naked child
on the all-but-naked hill against a naked sky,
as if  what you could not see were the question
and she the reply.
Source: Poetry (February 2008).
Robin Robertson: Born in Perthshire, poet Robin Robertson was brought up on the northeast coast of Scotland where, as he says in a 2008 interview, “history, legend and myth merged cohesively in the landscape.” Robertson’s early influences include the stories of Celtic and Classical myth, the vernacular ballads, and folklore. His deeply sensory poems explore notions of love and loss framed by the dialogue between the classical and the contemporary. Describing the poet’s task, Robertson tells of the desire to reveal “the refreshed world and, through a language thick with sound and connotation and metaphor, make some sense: some new connection between what is seen and felt and what is understood.”  (Source: PoetryFoundation)

Cat, Failing

BY ROBIN ROBERTSON
A figment, a thumbed
maquette of a cat, some
ditched plaything, something
brought in from outside:
his white fur stiff and grey,
coming apart at the seams.
I study the muzzle
of perished rubber, one ear
eaten away, his sour body
lumped like a bean-bag
leaking thinly
into a grim towel. I sit
and watch the light
degrade in his eyes.


He tries and fails
to climb to his chair, shirks
in one corner of the kitchen,
cowed, denatured, ceasing to be
anything like a cat,
and there's a new look
in those eyes
that refuse to meet mine
and it's the shame of  being
found out.  Just that.
And with that
loss of face
his face, I see,
has turned human.
Source: Poetry (November 2007).


Helen Mort was born in Sheffield in 1985. Her collection 'Division Street' is published by Chatto & Windus. She has published two pamphlets with tall-lighthouse press, 'the shape of every box' and 'a pint for the ghost', a Poetry Book Society Choice for Spring 2010. Five-times winner of the Foyle Young Poets award, she received an Eric Gregory Award from The Society of Authors in 2007 and won the Manchester Young Writer Prize in 2008. In 2010, she became the youngest ever poet in residence at The Wordsworth Trust, Grasmere. 

Passing Place

by HELEN MORT

Stall here and let the world
go past, the way
the world well might
on heather-coloured days like this,
an Assynt autumn crawling
from the West.
Let unfamiliar crofts
approach too fast,
their windows headlamps
trained at you,
then Suliven, prehistoric,
speeding down the one-track road
until that road’s a living stream
of marshland, swamp,
the whole damn sea, then
every town you've ever driven through,
thought less of than you should.
Look, here's your house
your room, your matchbox parents
clinging to the door.
Sit still and grip the wheel,
just don't look back -
behind, in the next layby,
all you left waits
with the engine running,
still in gear.
Source: Granta
Dannie Abse is considered one of the most important Welsh writers of the past century, Abse was born in Cardiff, Wales, to non-Welsh-speaking parents, but has lived mostly in London. His poetry collections include Selected Poems (1970), winner of an Arts Council of Wales Literature Award;Pythagoras (1979); Way Out in the Centre (1981); Ask the Bloody Horse (1986); andRunning Late (2006), for which he was awarded the Roland Mathias prize. Judge Glyn Mathias wrote that the volume contained “wonderful evocations of atmosphere, regret, longing for the simple, familiar things—and anticipation of it all passing. Every poem has something—some phrasing, some image that gives the reader that tremor of sudden recognition.”  (Source: Poetry Foundation)

A Heritage

BY DANNIE ABSE
A heritage of a sort.
A heritage of comradeship and suffocation.


The bawling pit-hooter and the god’s   
explosive foray, vengeance, before retreating   
to his throne of sulphur.


Now this black-robed god of fossils
and funerals,
petrifier of underground forests
and flowers,
emerges with his grim retinue
past a pony’s skeleton, past human skulls,
into his half-propped up, empty, carbon colony.


Above, on the brutalised,
unstitched side of a Welsh mountain,
it has to be someone from somewhere else   
who will sing solo


not of the marasmus of the Valleys,   
the pit-wheels that do not turn,   
the pump-house abandoned;


nor of how, after a half-mile fall   
regiments of miners’ lamps   
no longer, midge-like,
rise and slip and bob.


Only someone uncommitted,   
someone from somewhere else,   
panorama-high on a coal-tip,   
may jubilantly laud
the re-entry of the exiled god   
into his shadowless kingdom.


He, drunk with methane,
raising a man’s femur like a sceptre;
she, his ravished queen,
admiring the blood-stained black roses
that could not thrive on the plains of Enna.
Source : Dannie Abse, “A Heritage” from New and Collected Poems, published by Hutchinson. Used by permission of The Random House Group Limited by Poetry Foundation.
Moniza Alvi was born in Lahore, Pakistan, and came to England when she was a few months old. She grew up in Hertfordshire and studied at the universities of York and London. Peacock Luggage, a book of poems by Moniza Alvi and Peter Daniels, was published as a result of the two poets jointly winning the Poetry Business Prize in 1991. Moniza Alvi went on to write five further poetry collections. Moniza Alvi now tutors for the Poetry School and lives in Norfolk. In 2002 she received a Cholmondeley Award for her poetry. ( Source: Website of Moniza Alvi)

Mermaid
by MONIZA ALVI

   
About human love,
                              she knew nothing. 

I’ll show you he promised.
But first you need legs.

And he held up
                         a knife

with the sharpest of tips
to the ripeness of her emerald tail.

She danced an involuntary dance,
captive
            twitching with fear.
  
Swiftly
            he slit

down the muscular length
exposing the bone in its red canal.

She played dead on the rock
                
           dead by the blue lagoon
           dead to the ends of her divided tail.

He fell on her, sunk himself deep
into the apex.

Then he fled
                     on his human legs.

Human love cried the sea,
the sea in her head.


Anne Carson is a professor of Classics as well as a poet, essayist and translator. “In the small world of people who keep up with contemporary poetry,” wrote Daphne Merkin in the New York Times Book Review, “Anne Carson, a Canadian professor of classics, has been cutting a large swath, inciting both envy and admiration.”Carson has gained both critical accolades and a wide readership over the course of her “unclassifiable” publishing career. In addition to her many highly-regarded translations of classical writers such as Sappho and Euripides, and her triptych rendering of An Oresteia (2009), Carson has published poems, essays, libretti, prose criticism and verse novels that often cross genres. Known for her supreme erudition—Merkin called her “one of the great pasticheurs”—Carson’s poetry can also be heart-breaking and she regularly writes on love, desire, sexual longing and despair. Always an ambitious poet whatever her topic or genre, Merkin wrote of Carson’s The Beauty of the Husband, “I don’t think there has been a book since Robert Lowell’s Life Studies that has advanced the art of poetry quite as radically as Anne Carson is in the process of doing.” Source: Poetry Foundation

Anne Carson's writes very long poems. A short poems could not be found.

Sinéad Morrissey is a poet from Northern IrelandRaised in Belfast, she was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, where she took BA and PhD degrees, and won the Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award in 1990. She has published four collections of poetry: There Was Fire in Vancouver (1996), Between Here and There(2001), The State of the Prisons (2005), and Through the Square Window (2009), the second, third and fourth of which were shortlisted for the T. S. Eliot Prize. After periods living in Japan and New Zealand she now lives in Belfast, where she has been writer-in-residence atQueen's University, Belfast and currently lectures. ( Source: Wikipedia)

In my dream the dead have arrived
to wash the windows of my house.
There are no blinds to shut them out with.

The clouds above the Lough are stacked
like the clouds are stacked above Delft.
They have the glutted look of clouds over water.

The heads of the dead are huge. I wonder
if it’s my son they’re after, his
effortless breath, his ribbon of years ─

but he sleeps on unregarded in his cot,
inured, it would seem, quite naturally
to the sluicing and battering and pairing back of glass

that delivers this shining exterior …excerpt from "Through the Square Window"




Daljit Nagra was born and raised in west London by his Punjabi parents. He was awarded the Forward Poetry Prize for best single poem in 2004 and his debut collection, Look We Have Coming to Dover! was published in 2006 to great acclaim. 
Ode to Harrowby DALJIT NAGRA
All shades to the good in my heartfelt Harrow
with its Metropolitan Line for the sticks or the city!
Look at us side by side and mucking-in for the graft
for Harrow's no one's centre - everyone's home!
Harrow is stalls bustling with enormous gourds, 
aubergines and plantains! Harrow is Polski Sklep,
seasonal matzos, and the daily splash-island-song 
of pomegranate, guava, melons and mangoes!
Harrow is ball-clacking shinty, cricket, bowls
and a workout for zumba, bhangra or freestyle!
Harrow is Diwali, Eidh, St Patricks, Channukah
alongside summers of jazzy razzamatazz melas!
These sepia shades of tall-trees and slant-parks
were home for Romantic Lord Byron, home too
for India's jewel of Independence Jawaharlal Nehru
and we'll fight on the beaches Winston Churchill!
Home too for our time-bending Roger Bannister -
imagine him pegging-it down the lanes for school
at Vaughan Primary where nowadays my daughters
are at home in the countries and continents of tongues!
May my children and all the children of Vaughan,
all who claim their origins from over the rainbow,
learn to love whatever is kaleidoscopic or contrary
in our youthful Harrow with its arms flying in the air!
Source: Website of Daljit Nagra

Maurice Riordan was born in 1953 in Lisgoold, Co. Cork. His first collection, A Word from the Loki (1995) was nominated for the T. S. Eliot Prize. Floods (2000) was a Book of the Year in both the Sunday Times and Irish Times. The Holy Land (2007) won the Michael Hartnett Award. He lives in London and has taught at Imperial College and Goldsmiths College, and is currently Professor of Poetry at Sheffield Hallam University. 

Digital
after the Maltese of Immanuel Mifsud

In the electronic age, every nutcase
With a notebook is writing a masterpiece.
They spend their nights locked up in chat rooms
And emerge with red eyes and love poems. 
Source: Poetry Foundation
Michael Symmons Roberts is a British poet. He has published six collections of poetry, all with Cape (Random House), and has won the Whitbread Poetry Award and the Forward Prize, as well as major prizes from the Arts Council and Society of Authors. He has been shortlisted for the TS Eliot Prize, the Griffin International Poetry Prize and the Ondaatje Prize. He has also written novels, libretti and texts for oratorios and song cycles. He regularly writes and presents documentaries and dramas for broadcasting and is Professor of Poetry at Manchester Metropolitan University.

Mapping the Genome

BY MICHAEL SYMMONS ROBERTS

Geneticist as driver, down the gene
codes in, let's say, a topless coupe
and you keep expecting bends,


real tyre-testers on tight
mountain passes, but instead it's dead
straight, highway as runway,


helix unravelled as vista,
as vanishing point. Keep your foot
down. This is a finite desert.


You move too fast to read it,
the order of the rocks, the cacti,
roadside weeds, a blur to you.


Every hour or so, you pass a shack
which passes for a motel here:
tidy faded rooms with TVs on


for company, the owner pacing out
his empty parking lot. And after
each motel you hit a sandstorm


thick as fog, but agony.
Somewhere out there are remnants
of our evolution, genes for how


to fly south, sense a storm,
hunt at night, how to harden
your flesh into hide or scales.


These are the miles of dead code.
Every desert has them.
You are on a mission to discover


why the human heart still slows
when divers break the surface,
why mermaids still swim in our dreams.
Source: Poetry (June 2003).

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Abhay K & Abhi Subedi at the Nepal Literature Festival 2013

Abhay K. & Prof. Abhi Subedi on Poets & Poetry at the Nepal Literature Festival on 26 October 2013 at 4 pm at the Nepal Academy, Kathmandu

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Brief introduction of litterateurs in race of Nobel Prize in Literature 2013


Haruki Murakami ( born January 12, 1949) is a best-selling Japanese writer.His works
of fiction and non-fiction have garnered critical acclaim and numerous awards, including the Franz Kafka Prize, the Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award and the Jerusalem Prize, among others. Murakami has also translated a number of English works to Japanese. His notable works include 1Q84, Kafka on the Shore, Norwegian Wood, and The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. Murakami's fiction, often criticized by Japan's literary establishment, is often surrealistic and nihilistic, marked by a Kafkaesque rendition of themes of loneliness and alienation . He is considered an important figure in postmodern literature. The Guardian praised Murakami as "among the world's greatest living novelists" for his works and achievements.

Joyce Carol Oates (born June 16, 1938) is an American author. Oates published her first book in 1963 and has since published over forty novels, as well as a number of plays and novellas, and many volumes of short stories, poetry, and nonfiction. She has won many awards for her writing, including the National Book Award, for her novel them (1969), two O. Henry Awards, and the National Humanities Medal. Her novels Black Water (1992), What I Lived For (1994), and Blonde (2000) were nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.

Alice Ann Munro (born 10 July 1931) is a Canadian author. The winner of the 2009 Man Booker International Prize for her lifetime body of work, she is also a three-time winner of Canada's Governor General's Award for fiction, and a perennial contender for the Nobel Prize. The locus of Munro’s fiction is her native southwestern Ontario. Her "accessible, moving stories" explore human complexities in a seemingly effortless style. Munro's writing has established her as "one of our greatest contemporary writers of fiction," or, as Cynthia Ozick put it, "our Chekhov.

Péter Nádas (born 14 October 1942) is a Hungarian writer, playwright, and essayist. He was born in Budapest as the son of László Nádas and Klára Tauber. After the takeover of the Hungarian Nazis, the Arrow Cross Party on 15 October 1944, Klára Tauber escaped with her son to Bačka and Novi Sad, but returned to the capital directly before the Siege of Budapest. Péter Nádas survived the siege together with his mother in the flat of his uncle, the journalist Pál Aranyossi.

Jon Fosse (born 29 September 1959) is a Norwegian author and dramatist.
Jon Olav Fosse was born in Haugesund, Norway. He debuted in 1983 with the novel Raudt, svart (Red, black). His first play, Og aldri skal vi skiljast, was performed and published in 1994. Jon Fosse has written novels, short stories, poetry, children's books, essays and plays. His works have been translated into more than forty languages. He is widely considered as one of the world's greatest contemporary playwrights.

Ko Un (born on 1 August or 11 April 1933) is a South Korean poet. His works have been translated and published in more than 15 countries and he has been imprisoned many times. Ko is routinely mentioned as one of the frontrunners for the Nobel Prize in Literature,and Korean reporters have camped outside his house ahead of the annual recipient announcement.

Assia Djebar (Arabic: آسيا جبار‎) is the pen-name of Fatima-Zohra Imalayen (born 30 June 1936), an Algerian novelist, translator and filmmaker. Most of her works deal with obstacles faced by women, and she is noted for her feminist stance. She is "frequently associated with women's writing movements, her novels are clearly focused on the creation of a genealogy of Algerian women, and her political stance is virulently anti-patriarchal as much as it is anti-colonial."Djebar is considered to be one of North Africa's pre-eminent and most influential writers. She was elected to the Académie française on 16 June 2005, the first writer from the Maghreb to achieve such recognition. For the entire body of her work she was awarded the 1996 Neustadt International Prize for Literature.

Thomas Ruggles Pynchon, Jr. (/pɪntʃ ˈɑːn/May 8, 1937) is an American novelist. A MacArthur Fellow, he is noted for his dense and complex novels. Both his fiction and nonfiction writings encompass a vast array of subject matter, styles and themes, including (but not limited to) the fields of history, science, and mathematics. For his most praised novel, Gravity's Rainbow, Pynchon won the 1974 U.S. National Book Award for Fiction and he is regularly cited by Americans as a contender for the Nobel Prize in Literature.

Ali Ahmad Said Esber (Arabic: علي أحمد سعيد إسبر‎; transliterated: alî ahmadi sa'îdi asbar or Ali Ahmad Sa'id; born 1 January 1930), also known by the pen name Adonis or Adunis  is a Syrian poet, essayist, and translator. He has written more than twenty books and volumes of poetry in the Arabic language as well as translated several works from French. Imprisoned in Syria in the mid-1950s as a result of his beliefs, Adunis settled abroad and has made his career largely in Lebanon and France. A perennial contender for the Nobel Prize in Literature,he has been regularly nominated for the award since 1988 and has been described as the greatest living poet of the Arab world.

Philip Milton Roth (born March 19, 1933) is an American novelist.
He first gained attention with the 1959 novella Goodbye, Columbus, an irreverent and humorous portrait of American-Jewish life for which he received the U.S. National Book Award for Fiction. Roth's fiction, regularly set in Newark, New Jersey, is known for its intensely autobiographical character, for philosophically and formally blurring the distinction between reality and fiction, for its "supple, ingenious style" and for its provocative explorations of Jewish and American identity. His profile rose significantly in 1969 after the publication of the controversial Portnoy's Complaint, the humorous and sexually explicit psychoanalytical monologue of "a lust-ridden, mother-addicted young Jewish bachelor," filled with "intimate, shameful detail, and coarse, abusive language.

Source: Wikipedia

Friday, August 16, 2013

A letter from Jagdish Gandhi in appreciation of Earth Anthem by Abhay K




Thank you for your email of August 6.Your earth anthem makes immediate impact on the mind of the reader.  The anthem is  certainly the creation of a born world citizen whose heart radiates the spontaneous feelings of global brotherhood, global unity and global light that seeks to eliminate darkness and ignorance caused by xenophobia, the greatest evil that blocks the unity current in the world.
Being an Indian foreign service officer and by virtue of that position you have been meeting eminent personalities and intellectuals  of the world which has given you the most valuable experience of common thinking of the people and their  innermost longing for mutual love and affection among the people of the world. It is highly appreciating that within a short period of ten years as Indian Foreign Service Officer you have probed human mind in the correct perspective prompting you to recognize the earth as the common habitat of humanity. Naturally, you have rightly come to the conclusion that all species living on the common home  named the  earth are its flora and fauna.  
Besides having  noble thoughts and feelings you are apparently a poet at heart.It is evident from your description of the earth as the cosmic oasis or  the cosmic blue pearl, which it indeed is. The colour of us human beings white, brown, black is but  a trifling excuse to differentiate man  from man .  Whatever be our skin, whatever be our language and whatever be our place of residence the earth is our home.
The power of feelings and thoughts of world unity in the Earth Anthem is so strong that  it will be readily accepted by all people of the earth. As for me I have been touched by the Earth Anthem because I am also a humble supporter of unity of human race.  I thank you very much for considering me worthy of reading your Earth Anthem. I have great expectations from you and hope that you will continue to enlighten the  people of the earth about the unity of human race. 

  -  Dr Jagdish Gandhi
  Founder Manager, City Montessori School* (CMS)
  Convenor, International Conference of Chief Justices of the World on Article 51     of the Constitution of India
  Lucknow, India