Sunday, July 31, 2011

Late Poetry Day Event at Titirangi


Lopdell House Gallery
[Photograph: The Woods B & B]


I guess the idea of these posts is more to advertise things in advance than to conduct subsequent post-mortems, but I can't help wanting to spread the word about the lovely little publications associated with these Lopdell House readings.

This is the third year in a row that Lesley Smith at the Gallery has been printing handmade covers for chapbooks of poems by the various readers at their Poetry Day celebrations (albeit a week late on this occasion). The contents are selected by her and MC Ila Selwyn, and sold at the bargain price of $10 each - $20 for a package of three at the reading on Friday (29th July).

And here they are, in reverse order of publication:




  • Selwyn, Ila, & Lesley Smith, ed. the winding stair: Poems by Rosetta Allan, Murray Edmond, Siobhan Harvey, Alice Hooton, Michele Leggott, Judith McNeil, Bob Orr, Alistair Paterson, John Pule, Jack Ross, Ila Selwyn, Penny Somervaille, Robert Sullivan & Denys Trussell. Limited edition of 80 copies. Titirangi: Lopdell House Gallery, 2011.









  • Selwyn, Ila, & Lesley Smith, ed. Red Tendrils: Poems by Selina Tusitala Marsh, Kevin Ireland, Janet Charman, Courtney Meredith, Daniel Larsen, Mark Pirie, Ross Brighton, Raewyn Alexander, Doug Poole & Ila Selwyn. Limited edition of 110 copies. Titirangi: Lopdell House Gallery, 2010.









  • Selwyn, Ila, & Lesley Smith, ed. elusive but daring and strong: Poems by C. K. Stead, Glenn Colquhoun, Michael Stevens, Gus Simonovic, Tim Heath, Riemke Ensing, Karlo Mila, Genevieve Maclean, Renee Liang & Ila Selwyn. Limited edition of 150 copies. Titirangi: Lopdell House Gallery, 2009.








Bronwyn and I drove out there with Michele Leggott, who was also billed to read, and we spent a most pleasant late afternoon in a nice little restaurant called Takahe across the street, until it was time to climb the winding stair to the venue for the kick-off at 7 pm. My brother Ken, who is visiting from Edinburgh, also came along to sample this strange thing called a "Poetry Reading," and professed himself much pleased with the experience.

I can't speak for myself, of course, but everyone else seemed to be in fine form. Michele has a new way of reading which involves recording her poems in advance and then playing them back to herself through an earpiece as she performs them, as she can no longer make out the largest type on even the best illuminated page. She recited her poem peri poietikes (which you can find here), and there was something absolutely magical - I thought - about the effect she produced: something Mediterranean, classical almost.

Much of our talk, earlier in the evening, had been about Martin Edmond's latest book, Dark Night Walking with McCahon, which we'd both been reading. It was a dark night, and a rainy one, and the fact that we were actually in one of Colin McCahon's old stamping grounds out west somehow added to the atmosphere of the whole event.



Edmond, Martin. Dark Night: Walking with McCahon. Auckland: Auckland University Press, 2011.




For the record, I think it's a wonderful book, constructed out of St John of the Cross's "Dark Night of the Soul" poem in much the same way as Michele's essay is constructed out of her meditations on those criss-crossing Cretan bees in her own poem.

We had to leave early, unfortunately, after only ten of the fourteen poets had read. Apologies for that, but one isn't always a free agent when acting as chauffeur as well. I would happily have stayed to the end, but it wasn't to be.

I had been anticipating it as a bit of an ordeal, I must confess: so many different tasks to fulfil, agendas to anticipate, all in the one evening. As it is, though, it seemed to fall into place in the most natural and harmonious way. Thanks once more to Ila (and Lesley) for organising the reading - and the chapbook, too.

Having some experience with such matters myself, I can imagine just how much invisible work had to go on behind the scenes for the whole thing to come off. Thanks, too, to the friendly and enthusiastic Titirangi audience who make driving out there to read such a pleasure.





Saturday, July 23, 2011

Finds (6): Thoroughly Munted


Guillaume Apollinaire. Alcools. 1913. Trans. Anne Hyde Greet.
Foreword by Warren Ramsey. Berkeley & Los Angeles:
University of California Press, 1966.



It's funny when you go snooping around in the ripped old paperbacks in the back of a bookshop (in this case, Jason Books on High Street, long before it came up in the world and went boutique). You see something there which hardly even seems to merit picking up - in this case a backless wodge of papers with a pasted spine and no title-page - which turns out to be one of the finds of your life.

I see from the inscription above that it was on the 5th September, 1979, some 30-odd years ago, and the book in question was Apollinaire's Alcools - or, rather, a complete dual-text translation of the same, which some iconoclast had ripped apart and then deposited among the other trash to be pulped. A price of 15 cents hardly seemed exorbitant even at the time, especially when I think of the amount of time I've spent leafing through those pages, reading and rereading those amazing poems: "Zone", "Le Pont Mirabeau" - above all, "La Chanson du Mal-Aimé":





Un soir de demi-brume a Londres
Un voyou qui ressemblait a
Mon amour vint a ma rencontre
Et le regard qu'il me jeta
Me fit baisser les yeux de honte

More than a half-century has passed since the manuscript be­ginning with these lines was fished out of limbo, read and read again, and a dazzled magazine editor called across the room that here, at last, was a first-rate poem. A reader of the sixties might find other terms in which to express his approval, though some of Paul Léautaud's are still serviceable: "I read, read twice, three times, was carried away, dazed, delighted, deeply moved. Such melancholy, such evocative tone, such bohemian­ism, such rangings of the mind, and that faintly gypsy air and the total absence of that abomination of ordinary verse, la rime riche ... "

- Warren Ramsay, "Foreword"





I'm glad that that front page of the foreword hadn't gone the way of the title-page and all the other prelims (including the copyright page). That idea of an editor picking up the poem for the first time, reading it, and immediately recognising genius was, I suspect, the main reason I persevered through all the strange pages of Apollinaire's book. I'd never read poetry like this, had no frame of reference to set it in - for a while, it seemed to me as if I'd never read poetry at all before this, my discovery of the Modern.




Even as first published in that distant spring of 1909 (when it lacked two stanzas of the Zaparogian Cossacks' horrendous letter and, unlike the more characteristic final version, was punctu­ated), "La Chanson du Mal-Aimé" has the authority of the more mature Apollinaire, the vibrancy of a modern poet speak­ing in his own voice ...

I don't quite know why anyone would take what must have been a fairly new book (Anne Hyde Greet's version of Alcools was published in 1966, a mere ten years before I found it in those back shelves in Auckland) and dismember it like that. Had the poet displeased them somehow? Perhaps that word scrawled on the back cover holds some clue, like the "CROATOAN" found carved on a tree by the lost settlers of Roanoke Island: "scenarios", it appears to read. But what scenarios, when and where?

I doubt I'll ever know.







Arthur Koestler. Dialogue with Death. Trans. Trevor & Phyllis Blewitt. 1937. Abridged ed. Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1942.

DIALOGUE WITH DEATH
BY
ARTHUR KOESTLER

TRANSLATED BY TREVOR AND PHYLLIS BLEWITT

On February 8th, 1937, six months after the outbreak of the Civil War in Spain, the troops of General Franco entered Malaga. The author, then a war correspondent for an English Liberal newspaper, had remained in the besieged town after its evacuation by the Republican army. On the day after the entry of the conquering troops, he was arrested, imprisoned and sentenced to death. For four months he was kept in solitary confinement, witnessing the executions of his fellow ­prisoners and awaiting his own. He kept a diary in his cell, which he succeeded in smuggling out when released; this diary forms the main part of Dialogue with Death.

Under pressure of world-wide protests General Franco agreed that Koestler should be exchanged for a prisoner of the Republican Govern­ment. He was released in May 1937. Dialogue with Death was first published in January 1938, as the second part of Spanish Testament. The original edition, with an introduction by the Duchess of Atholl, contained a number of chapters dealing with political and military aspects of the Civil War, which was then still in progress. Since then it has become, in the words of the New Statesman and Nation, a book "which should rank among British classics."

This rather scruffy looking Penguin I found in the shelves of an old second-hand furniture shop which used to nestle in the heart of the Mairangi Bay CBD, between Max Paterson's stationers and the greengrocer's shop. It was run by a lady called Ruth Thorne, who maintained a couple of bays full of battered books at bargain prices.

This one probably set me back ten or twenty cents, in July 1979, a couple of months before I bought the Apollinaire. It had an almost equally great influence on me, though.





Those 1940s Penguins seem so strange and exotic to us now, but it's worth remembering that they just looked junky at the time. It was the content of the book that interested me, the strange intense account that Koestler gave of his experiences in a death-cell during the Spanish Civil War. I'd already read his classic novel about the Stalinist purges, Darkness at Noon, at the recommendation of our Russian teacher, Eddie Meijers, but it was this coverless paperback which had the stronger effect on me, I think. Something about the way he wrote was so vivid and immediate - I guess I've been trying to find something like it ever since.







DIALOGUE WITH DEATH

BY
ARTHUR KOESTLER
Translated by
TREVOR AND PHYLLIS BLEWITT

PENGUIN BOOKS
HARMONDSWORTH MIDDLESEX ENGLAND
300 FOURTH AVENUE NEW YORK U.S.A.

Published in 1938 by Victor Gollancz Ltd.
Abridged edition published in Penguin Books Feb. 1942
Reprinted in Penguin Books March 1943

FOREWORD


NONE of the characters in this book is fictitious; most of them are dead by now.

To die - even in the service of an impersonal cause - is always a personal and intimate affair. Thus it was almost inevitable that these pages, written for the most part, in the actual expectancy and fear of death, should bear a private character. There are, in the author's opinion, two reasons which justify their publication.

In the first place, the things which go on inside a condemned man's head have a certain psychological interest. Professional writers have rarely had an opportunity of studying these processes in the first person singular. I have tried to present them as frankly and concisely as I could. The main difficulty was the temptation to cut a good figure; I hope that the reader will agree that I have succeeded in overcoming this.

In the second place, I believe that wars, in particular civil wars, consist of only ten per cent action and of ninety per cent passive suffering. Thus this account of the hermetically sealed Andalusian mortuaries may perhaps bring closer to the reader the nature of Civil War than descriptions of battles.

I dedicate it to my friend Nicolas, an obscure little soldier of the Spanish Republic, who on April 14th, 1937, on the sixth birthday of that Republic, was shot dead in the prison of Seville.

A.K.




THE AUTHOR


Arthur Koestler was born in Budapest in 1905, a Hungarian subject, and studied engineering and psychology respectively at the Technische Hoschschule and the University of Vienna. He became a journalist at the age of 21,lived as a foreign correspondent in the Middle East, Paris and Moscow, travelled in Soviet Central Asia and in the Arctic on board the Graf Zeppelin. While correspondent of the News Chronicle during the Spanish Civil War, he was captured by General Franco's troops and was imprisoned for having denounced, in the British Press, German and Italian intervention on the Nationalist side.

In 1938 he abandoned journalism to take up novel-writing. His works include The Gladiators, Darkness at Noon (fiction), Scum of the Earth, which relates the author's experiences during the French collapse, and Spanish Testament, of which Dialogue with Death is an improved version. Koestler is now serving as a private in the British Army.




Of course the word "abridged" always acts on me like a red rag on a bull. I always want the book, the whole book and nothing but the book.

As I read more about Koestler, though, I began to understand the curious politics behind these various versions of his Spanish civil war memoir, the strange fusion of communists propaganda and personal testimony in the original version (which I found some years later in a pile of old Gollancz Left Book Club editions:

Koestler, Arthur. Spanish Testament. Trans. Trevor & Phyllis Blewitt. Left Book Club Edition. London: Gollancz, 1937.

Eventually I even discovered a third version of the book, from the "Danube Edition" of his collected works, which began to appear in the 1960s. There's something about that battered old Penguin that seems almost to embody history for me, though.

The fact that it had been printed a mere six years after the events described in it gave me a powerful sense of their reality, their tangible weight and gravity.

I've never been able to ignore those ripped and munted books at the backs of bookshops ever since. How can you know what treasures might be sitting there, glowing radioactive in the dark?


Koestler, Arthur. Dialogue with Death. Trans. Trevor & Phyllis Blewitt. 1937. Abridged ed., 1942. Rev. Danube ed., 1966. London: Papermac, 1983.



Monday, July 04, 2011

Launching Leicester Kyle's Collected Poems


Leicester & his trademark fire-engine-red Land Rover
(Buller, 2000)



It's five years to the day since poet, priest and ecological activist Leicester Kyle (1937-2006) died in Christchurch hospital. I doubt that he'd recognise the city of his childhood if he could see it today. That former Christchurch is now a thing of the past ...

The main purpose of this post, though, is to advertise the Leicester Kyle website which has been set up by his literary executors (David Howard and myself) to make his writings more accessible in the future - both to those already familiar with his poetry, and those who've never heard of him or it. My model was Kendrick Smithyman's online Collected Poems 1943-1995 site, edited by Margaret Edcumbe and Peter Simpson, and designed expertly by Brian Flaherty.

There are eleven books (at present) listed under the name "Leicester Kyle" in the NZ National Library database, together with another earlier prose pamphlet indexed under "L. Kyle". My present intention is to put all of these up on the website. We'll be supplementing them with another eleven or so works which are not presently available in any public collection, though.

I certainly can't rival the snazzy production values and (very useful) search engine facilites on the Smithyman site. This will be another attempt on my part to make free space on the internet work for us as well as the corporate giants. What I've done, then, is to set up two linked websites:

  • The first site - Leicester Kyle - is basically confined to bibliographies and indexes. It aspires to provide complete listings of all primary and secondary material by and about Leicester. It gives details of each of his works, together with notes, and a table of contents hyperlinked to:
  • The second site - Leicester Kyle Texts - which will provide complete texts of each of the major books, together with a selection of the shorter poems.

The first site is as complete as I can make it at present, without further information and research. The second site is more of a foretaste at present, with only a few of his books up in full.

Basically, if you just want to read through one of them, you can go straight to Leicester Kyle Texts, and scroll down reading it page by page (I've also included a jpg illustration of each page, in order not to obscure any details of the original formatting. If you click on these pictures individually, they will enlarge).

If, on the other hand, you want to see the table of contents for a particular book, together with any notes or details from letters about it, you can go to the Leicester Kyle index site and click on the relevant link.

The list below will tell you which works are available already, and which ones will be going up over the next few months. I'll try to keep it continuously updated as each website grows:



Contents

[* = listed in the NZ National Library Network]


    Accessible online:


  1. Koroneho: Joyful News Out Of The New Found World (1996-2001) [A4: iv + 96 pp.]
    This work, a kind of Zukofskyan verse epic about the life and times of William Colenso ("Koroneho" in Maori) has never before now been published in full, although four extracts from it appeared in Alan Loney's magazine A Brief Description of the Whole World between 1997 and 1998.


  2. A Christmas Book (2000) [A5: 26 pp.]
    After moving to Millerton, an old mining town on the West Coast of the South Island, in 1998, Leicester developed the habit of producing a small book of poems every Christmas to send to his friends and family. This is the first of them, and one of the most charming and accessible of all of his works.


  3. * The Great Buller Coal Plateaux: A Sequence of Poems (2001) [A5: 31 pp.]
    Despite its unpretentious packaging, this little chapbook is one of Leicester's most important publications. It was an attempt to harness deliberately the propaganda power of poetry and the Arts in general against a large-scale commercial mining company. Of course we're constantly being told by every authority in sight that this is wrong, that Art should not be "political", that it's concerned with "higher things" etc. etc. But are there any higher things than the systematic despoliation of an untouched environment? The destruction of any joy or profit that any of us or our descendants can ever take from it in the future? This is an important book, and I'm glad to be able to make it accessible here to more people than were ever able to read it in Leicester's lifetime.


  4. Dun Huang Aesthetic Dance (2002) [A4: 10 pp.]
    One of Leicester's shorter poetry sequences. This was posted to me by him as a separate pamphlet, or else I might simply have included it in the "Shorter Poems" section of the site. It reflects his strong interest in syncretic religious traditions and in their bizarre and excessive linguistic registers.


  5. * Things to Do with Kerosene (2002) [A5: 34 pp.]
    Another one of his Christmas books, this one compiled from Aunt Daisy's depression-era household hints. One of the most entertaining books he ever put out, its publication was partly funded by the Buller Community Arts Council. It was launched by the Mayor, and got a great reception from the West Coast locals (by all accounts).


  6. * Panic Poems (2003) [A5: 39 pp.]
    Another Christmas book, this one concerned with the mechanics of his life in Millerton. His move there from Auckland was motivated (at least to some extent) by the death of his wife Miriel in 1998, so there must have been a lot of issues for him to work through. Others in similar circumstances may well find this book very helpful.


  7. Living at a Bad Address (2004) [A5: 38 pp.]
    The last of the full-scale Christmas books. This one is an anthology of shorter poems with brief introductions. Some of them are very moving to read, particularly those concerned with his daughter Anna's funeral.


  8. * Miller Creek (2004) [A5: 22 pp.]
    This is a beautiful gem-like little book of poems and pictures designed to draw attention to the ecological devastation caused by rivers poisoned by runoff from the mines. Joel Bolton's sketches are colourful and deft and the whole production deserves a wider audience, I think.


  9. Pamphlets & Ephemera
    This section includes the first and last of his Christmas letters and pamphlets, sent to various correspondents - principally Richard Taylor - between 1996 and 2005.


  10. Miscellaneous Prose
    A preliminary gathering of Leicester's reviews and critical introductions to the various publications he edited or contributed to in the last ten years of his life.


  11. Secondary Literature
    Articles, poems, reviews and tributes by a variety of people, among them Stu Bagby, Tony Chad, Scott Hamilton, David Howard, James Norcliffe and Richard Taylor. Again, this is a preliminary collection which will undoubtedly grow in the future.


  12. Bibliography
    As complete a listing as I can make at this point of his published works.




    Not yet available:


  1. * Options (1996-1997) [A4: 63 pp.]
    Leicester's first long narrative poem: "This set of four poems examines, with a wickedly satirical eye, a series of religious and mystical vocations. We have Evagrius, the fourth century ascetic; Jeremy Taylor, the seventeenth-century Anglo-Catholic Jeremiah ...; Fran, a thirteenth-century Franciscan mendicant transported to contemporary Northland; and finally Maria, the celebrated nineteenth-century dancing prophetess of Kaikohe." [Jack Ross, "Leicester H. Kyle: Prophet without Honour." Pander 6/7 (1999): 21 & 23.]

    [posted online Monday 19/12/11]


  2. * State Houses (1997) [A4: 43 pp.]
    This is a more personal piece: "interweaving tragic family history with the history of the first state houses in the Christchurch suburb of Riccarton. Leicester's 'dream-like recollection' of childhood 'is set against the ideology of which the state houses were part' (hence the Bauhaus epigraph, and the various diagrams and maps), but that 'progress is provided by a ritual house-blessing, an alternative ideology, which moves the family group from room to room, part to part, of reality'.” [Pander 6/7 (1999)]

    [posted online Monday 12/12/11]


  3. * A Voyge to New Zealand: The Log of Joseph Sowry, Translated and Made Better (1997) [A4: 117 pp.]
    This is an actual nineteenth-century emigrant's journal, which has been "teased ... into strange shapes on the page and in the imagination. It reads as an affectionate tribute to the spirit of our pioneers, a fin-de-siècle version of Curnow’s 'Landfall in Unknown Seas'.” [Pander 6/7 (1999)]

    [posted online Tuesday 20/12/11]


  4. Heteropholis (1998) [A4: 52 pp.]
    Some readers see this as Leicester's masterpiece. "It concerns a fallen angel, who has descended to earth in the form of a small green native gecko (species: Heteropholis gemmeus). This gecko has been caught by an apartment-dwelling Aucklander, and makes observations on his habits, on the weather (a subject of particular concern to angels, who are used to looking down), and on sundry other matters. ... It is, nevertheless, a profoundly serious and, indeed, partially autobiographical work." [Pander 6/7 (1999)]

    [posted online Friday 16/12/11]


  5. * A Machinery for Pain (1999) [A4: 37 pp.]
    This is his first book written entirely at Millerton: "a ... sequence on pain management, prompted by close personal experience" - the death of his wife Miriel, in particular.

    [posted online Monday 14/11/11]


  6. * A Safe House for a Man (2000) [A4: 86 pp.]
    The blurb copy I provided at the time read (in part) as follows: "The landscape of Leicester Kyle's long semi-narrative poem ... will be familiar to most of us: separation, self-analysis, acknowledgment of loss. There's little that's recondite or difficult about this poetry, and yet the craft and subtle intelligence of its author come through in every line. The title poem is accompanied by two others: The Araneidea - an oddly disturbing account of how to 'make good-looking, sightly cabinet objects' from live spiders; and Threnos - a moving elegy for the poet's wife Miriel."

    [posted online Saturday 10/12/11]


  7. * Five Anzac Liturgies (2000) [A4: 45 pp.]
    Calum Gilmour, whose Polygraphia Press published both this and A Safe House for a Man, wrote of it at the time: "This set of poems contains five pieces addressed to the South Island towns of Hawarden, Waikari, Rotherham, Culverden and Waiau respectively. Each poem is based round the theme of Anzac Day and how it affects each place addressed. The focus is on Anzac, on the people involved, on the significance of the remembrance in each place."

    [posted online Tuesday 29/11/11]


  8. King of Bliss (2002) [A4: 46 pp.]
    This book contains Leicester's thoughts on the subject of psychoanalysis, prompted by his experience of various therapies for clinical depression which he underwent while still living in Auckland in the 90s.

    [posted online Thursday 1/12/11]


  9. A Wedding in Tintown (2002) [A4: 36 pp.]
    This is a portrait of a place, revealed through a blow-by-blow account of a wedding celebration. Leicester wrote to me about it: "The wedding is one I took here in Millerton, and this is a faithful account of its proceeding; I've set it in Tintown, a now vanished mining village on the Plateau ... My aim was to describe the events, with little overt interpretation, and by means of a low tone to - by contrast - heighten and clarify the colours of the day. ... My hope is that the peculiar culture of the occasion just might make it interesting enough to be a good read."

    [posted online Tuesday 15/11/11]


  10. 8 Great O’s (2003) [A4: 46 pp.]
    This is a set of interlinked pieces connected by themes of religion and ritual. Leicester's preface specifies that the main text "is an adaptation of the last page of a pious biography, ‘The Life of St. Mary tbe Harlot’, written by her uncle, Ephraem, deacon of Edessa, around the year 370. ‘The Word' is a family story. 'The Great 0 's' is a term taken from the Advent liturgy."

    [posted online Friday 18/11/11]


  11. Anogramma (2005) [A4: 64 pp.]
    An amusing and lighthearted piece of autobiography, which records Leicester's first job after leaving school: as a "horticultural apprentice at the Christchurch Botanical Gardens ... All apprentices were required to attend monthly meetings of the Christchurch Botanical Gardens Horticultural Apprentices Mutual Improvement Society" and much of the text is devoted to an account of these meetings, together with some details of the 50 year reunion of the apprentices.

    [posted online Saturday 10/12/11]


  12. * Breaker: A Progress of the Sea (2005) [A5: 78 pp.]
    Leicester's last book, and one of his most ambitious, "suggested by the Catalogue of Armed Forces in the second book of the Iliad. I read it in Pope's translation, and was fascinated by the whole idea and the poetry of it. The fascination led to a desire to do something of the kind myself and, casting about for a local battle, I hit on the idea of our self-defence against our eroding coast." says Leicester in his preface. The illustrations, by John Crawford, are very fine.

    [posted online Sunday 20/11/11]


  13. Collected Shorter Poems: 1 (1983-1998) [A4: 428 poems & sequences / 568 pp.]
    This is a list of all the poems and sequences included in the first of the the two large "Collected Poems" fileboxes which David and I inherited from Leicester's estate, and which contained (in approximate chronological order) all of the individual poems (outside published books) he wished to preserve. I'll be putting up a bare selection of these poems to start with - more over time, if demand warrants it.


  14. Selected Shorter Poems: 2 (1998-2006) [A4: 318 poems & sequences / 387 pp.]
    This includes all of the poems written after Leicester's move to the West Coast, mostly contained in the second of the the two large "Collected Poems" fileboxes. I'll be putting up rather more of these poems than the ones in the first box, as befits their superior quality (in my opinion, at any rate).


  15. Five Millerton Sequences [A5: viii + 48 pp.]
    This is a preliminary selection from the Millerton poems, chosen in consultation with David Howard, and intended both as an advertisement for this site and (hopefully) to revive some interest in Leicester in general. Few people have ever had the chance to read any of these poems before, after all. I hope you enjoy them. The book will be launched sometime next year - details to be announced on this blog (and hopefully elsewhere as well).

    [posted online Friday 16/12/11]


  16. Prose Fiction
    • * I Got Me Flowers: Letters to a Psychiatrist [A5: 56 pp.]
    Leicester began as a prose writer, in the 1970s, and had some success with this and some of his other stories before switching to poetry in the early 1990s. This "excessively Jungian" (as Leicester himself described it) novella from the mid-70s is the finest of his extant works of fiction - or at any rate that was my impression when I read through them all while staying with Leicester at Millerton in 1998.

    [posted online Sunday 13/11/11]


  17. Chronology
    As complete a listing as I can make of the known events and dates of Leicester's life.

    [posted online Saturday 12/11/11]






So there you go. I know it's a bit crazy to entrust all this material to the tender mercies of blogspot, but you can be sure that I'll be keeping sedulous backups and printouts of everything as well.




The view from Leicester's verandah at Millerton
[photographs: Jack Ross (2000)]