20 February 2014

Poetry Thursday - When the Light Shifts by Thomas A Clark

"trembling / raindrops on birch twigs" (photo by Annie Japaud)

when the light shifts

countless trembling
raindrops on birch twigs
fade to a clarity that seems
the temper of the day
until light returns
to the shining tree

when a breeze blows
through grasses or branches
light touches the harp
there are no witnesses
only musicians, dancers

Thomas A. Clark

from Yellow & Blue (Carcanet Press, 2014); found on scottishpoetrylibrary.org.uk


Thomas A Clark's poems are based on walking in the Scottish landscape; they are attentive to the form and experience of walking. Born in 1944, he's been called a minimalist Romantic poet. I'm excited to read that he consciously " treat[s] the finished book as imaginative space, the page a framing device around an image or a phrase, and the turning of pages a revelation or delay".

Looking for something else (a particular print by Kate Whiteford - and with walking+art much on my mind) I was intrigued by a book cover and thus stumbled on his work, a few days ago.
That big online bookseller lists many publications by him, often collaborations. Books to spend time with, by the look of it.

More information from the scottishpoetry website:

"In 1973, with the artist Laurie Clark, he started Moschatel Press. At first a vehicle for small publications by Ian Hamilton Finlay, Cid Corman, Jonathan Williams, Simon Cutts and others, it soon developed into a means of formal investigation within his own poetry, treating the book as imaginative space, the page as a framing device or as quiet around an image or a phrase, the turning of pages as revelation or delay.

"From 1986, Laurie and Thomas A Clark have run Cairn Gallery, one of the earliest of ‘artist-run spaces’, specialising in Land Art, Minimalism and a lyrical or poetic Conceptualism. After many years in the Cotswolds, the Clarks moved in 2002 to re-open the gallery in Pittenweem.

"In addition to his books and smaller publications, Clark has also made site-specific installations in galleries, in gardens or in the landscape, and has many works in permanent collections world-wide."

A poet, a publisher, an artist (land artist, book artist...), a walker - and a blogger - it doesn't get better than that.

And so easy to buy those books with 1-click...





1 comment:

barleybooks said...

OK, you've convinced me! I bought the book!