The Griffin Poetry Prize announced their shortlist this week.
Two favourite Annes made the cut.
The most generous of all poetry prizes in this country, indeed one of the biggest in the world, the Griffin was established in 2000 to raise the profile of poetry in the public imagination. It is hard to think now of a world without it, such is the impact and reach.
Toronto born Anne Carson is on the shortlist, nominated for Red Doc>, a long-form poem and follow-up to the critically acclaimed Autobiography of Red. Fellow Toronto writer Anne Michaels also made the shortlist for Correspondences.
The best way to introduce yourself to these poets is by buying their books. Even better is being part of the audience when they will read excerpts before the big winner is announced. That event is held June 4th at Koerner Hall in Toronto and I will be there, cheering from my seat. There are few better ways to spend an early summer evening than listening to writers of this calibre speak brilliant work. Every poet has a style and delivery of their own. While there is no guarantee you will like every poem read or understand all of their meaning, hearing them read aloud remains your best shot at unzipping the veil.
There will always be wizards of words.
I am hoping Anne Carson reads this one from her nominated collection.
TIME PASSES TIME does not pass. Time all but passes. Time usually passes. Time passing and gazing. Time has no gaze. Time as perseverance. Time as hunger. Time in a natural way. Time when you were six the day a mountain. Mountain time. Time I don’t remember. Time for a dog in an alley caught in the beam of your flashlight. Time not a video. Time as paper folded to look like a mountain. Time smeared under the eyes of the miners as they rattle down into the mine. Time if you are bankrupt. Time if you Prometheus. Time if you are all the little tubes on the roots of a gorse plant sucking greenish black moistures up into new scribbled continents. Time it takes for the postal clerk to apply her lipstick at the back of the post office before the supervisor returns. Time it takes for a cow to tip over. Time in jail. Time as overcoats in a closet. Time for a herd of turkeys skidding and surprised on ice. All the time that has soaked into the walls here. Time between the little clicks. Time compared to the wild fantastic silence of the stars. Time for the man at the bus stop standing on one leg to tie his shoe. Time taking Night by the hand and trotting off down the road. Time passes oh boy. Time got the jump on me yes it did.
copyright © 2013 by Anne Carson