Books LIVE Community Sign up

Login to BooksLIVE

Forgotten password?

Forgotten your password?

Enter your username or email address and we'll send you reset instructions

Books LIVE

BooksLIVESA

Listen to five short stories by Nadine Gordimer (including Loot read by the author) via @openculture: fb.me/6CqAHMz7y

A Stanza of Poets Launch In the Heat of Shadows Edited by Denis Hirson at The Book Lounge

Denis Hirson

The wettest winter weather did not deter Cape Town’s poetry lovers from attending the launch of the latest exciting anthology from small independent publishers, Deep South (distributed by UKZN Press): In the Heat of Shadows: South African poetry 1996-2013.

Denis Hirson, who edited In the Heat of Shadows, explained to a packed Book Lounge that this collection followed on where The Lava of This Land: South African Poetry 1960-1996 had left off. He celebrated the fact that almost half of the participants in the anthology had joined him that evening to share their poems.

Robert Berold, Antjie Krog and Ari SitasIn the Heat of ShadowsHirson said it was a challenge to find a way to house so many powerful voices together in such a short space of time and also acknowledged the significant role that the funding provided by the National Arts Council of South Africa (NAC) had played in the publication of the book. He mentioned, too, the significant influence that the South African Season in France had been, in 2012 and 2013.

This exchange of cultural events between France and South Africa had been a rich encounter, complemented by an invitation which saw 14 South African poets head to France to participate in The South African focus at the Biennale of Poets of Val-de-Marne. These poets were: Kgositsile Keorapetse, Vonani Bila, Robert Berold, Ronelda Kamfer, Rustum Kozain, Karen Press, Joan Meterlerkamp, Gabeba Baderoon, Mongane Wally Serote, Bulelani Zantsi, Finuala Dowling and Ari Sitas. “In France this poetry is admired, appreciated and applauded by audience after audience,” Hirson said.

Gabeba Baderoon and Ingrid de KokHe also spoke of the experience of choosing poems for this particular anthology and of its sister publication, an anthology of South African poems that had been translated and published in France, Pas de blessure, pas d’histoire: Poèmes d’Afrique du Sud 1996-2013. In the Heat of Shadows was constructed in the wake of this anthology. Hirson said, “While I was thinking about which poems to put into this anthology, I was also thinking about the poems that would work beyond South Africa, in France, where I am often involved in readings with an actress and saxophone player.”

Hirson, who was involved in the translation of some of these poems, said one of the criterion for selection were poems that would “work” for both local and French audiences. “I’m well aware that another anthology, just as strong as this, could have been put together. Finuala Dowling and Rustum KozainBut these were the poems that spoke to me at the time I made the selection,” he said. He welcomed Antjie Krog, who opened the reading. She was followed by Ingrid de Kok, Karen Press, Rustum Kozain, Karen Press, Robert Berold, Gabeba Baderoon, Toni Stuart, Finuala Dowling, Jim Pascual Agustin, Nathan Trantraal and Ari Sitas.

In conclusion, Hirson observed that South African poets are – in the words of Czeslaw Milosz – “participants and witnesses of the political process”, or engaged in a quest for identity that often involves their ancestors. He suggested that there were poets in the post-apartheid dispensation who “expand time and space”. He observed that in the many different kinds of poems the human beings and the relationship between them form a coherent essence, whether the poetry is narrative or not.

“Central to this poetry, to what the situation has given to the poets, is what the poets have given to this place,” he said. He concluded by expressing his hope that people elsewhere would be applauding this poetry in the years to come.

* * * * * * * *

Liesl Jobson (@LieslJobson) tweeted from the launch using #livebooks:

* * * * * * * *

Facebook gallery

Book details

Bekendstelling van Die stilte opgeskort deur Heilna du Plooy in Pretoria

Die stilte opgeskortProtea Boekhuis nooi u en u metgesel vriendelik uit om die bekendstelling van Heilna du Plooy se nuwe digbundel, Die stilte opgeskort, oor ‘n glasie wyn en versnapering te vier.

Die geleentheid vind plaas op Saterdag, 16 Augustus en sal om 10:30 vir 11:00 begin.

Moet dit nie misloop nie!
 
Besonderhede

Boekbesonderhede

Rene Bohnen vertaal Lawrence Ferlinghetti en Andrei Voznesensky se Goya-gedigte

In die niks al omIn die niks al om-skrywer Rene Bohnen het onlangs ‘n “vertalingsbevlieging” gekry na ‘n deeglike “Google sessie”. Sy skryf, “Google is ʼn bietjie soos boomklim. Voetjie op hierdie tak, voetjie op daardie tak. Effe regs, effe hoër, dan weer effe links. Binnekort sit jy op ‘n onbeplande plek met ʼn uitsig. Meestal weet jy nie mooi hoe jy daar gekom het nie.”

Bohnen deel twee vertalings wat sy na hierdie bevlieging gedoen het – die eerste van ‘In Goya’s greatest scenes we seem to see’ deur Lawrence Ferlinghetti, die tweede van Andrei Voznesensky se gedig ‘I am Goya’.

Lees haar Versindaba-artikel, waar sy wonder of sy dié digters se woorde in Afrikaans kon vasvang en ook haar weergawes van hul verse deel:

Google is ʼn bietjie soos boomklim. Voetjie op hierdie tak, voetjie op daardie tak. Effe regs, effe hoër, dan weer effe links. Binnekort sit jy op ‘n onbeplande plek met ʼn uitsig. Meestal weet jy nie mooi hoe jy daar gekom het nie. Of hoe om weer af te klim nie. Dan maar laat los en spring. Quit. Escape. Soiets.

Daar is ook maar verskillende maniere van laat los. Soms besef mens mos so vreeslik konkreet dat jy jou mees Suidelike gedigte skryf in ʼn moontlik sterwende taal. Partykeer dink ek so. Die bekende wete dat ek onbelangrik is en niks het om te verloor nie, I may as well lose face, laat my, vreemd aan my aard, iets impulsief doen. Soms.

So beland ek laasmaand by Lawrence Ferlinghetti. A Coney Island of the mind. Nie dat ek dit nog nooit gelees het nie, maar intussen het ek mos baie ouer geword. En Ferlinghetti is 95, daar in New York. Ek was nog nooit in New York nie. Die kanse lyk ook maar skraal tot zero. Nogtans, in April, resoneer woorde uit die ou gedigte hard en duidelik.

Boekbesonderhede

New Poetry Anthology Edited by Denis Hirson: In the Heat of Shadows: South African poetry 1996-2013

In the Heat of ShadowsIn the Heat of Shadows: South African Poetry 1996–2013 presents work by 32 poets and includes some translations from Afrikaans, isiXhosa, isiZulu, Sesotho and Xitsonga.

This collection follows on from Denis Hirson’s 1997 anthology The Lava of this Land: South African Poetry 1960–1996.

South African poetry today is charged with restlessness, bursting with diversity. Gone is the intense inward focus required to deal with a situation of systematic oppression, the enclosing effort of concentration on a single predicament. While politics and identity continue to be central themes, the poetry since the late 1990s reveals a richer investigation of ancestors and history, alongside more experimentation with language and translation; and enduring concern with the touchstones of love, loss, memory, and acts of witnessing.

Denis Hirson was editor of a previous anthology of poetry: The Lava of this Land: South African Poetry 1960–1996 (Northwestern University Press and David Philip, 1997), was co-editor [with Martin Trump] of The Heinemann Book of South African Short Stories (Heinemann, 1994), and the author of an historical survey of South African literature, Worlds in One Country (Jacana 2011). He has also edited two anthologies of South African poetry in French translation, and has done much to promote South African literature in Europe.

Denis Hirson is the author of four books of memory: The House Next Door to Africa, I Remember King Kong (the Boxer), We Walk Straight So You Better Get Out the Way, White Scars, a poetry collection, Gardening in the Dark, and a novel, The Dancing and the Death in Lemon Street.

Poets included: Jim Pascual Agustin • Gabeba Baderoon • Robert Berold • Vonani Bila • Jeremy Cronin • Ingrid de Kok • Isobel DixonFinuala Dowling • Khadija Tracey Heeger • Denis Hirson • Ronelda Kamfer • Keorapetse Kgositsile • Katharine Kilalea • Rustum Kozain • Antjie Krog • David wa Maahlamela • Bongekile Joyce Mbanjwa • Joan Metelerkamp • Kobus Moolman • Isabella Motadinyane • Petra Müller • Gert Vlok Nel • Mxolisi Nyezwa • Karen Press • Mongane Wally Serote • Ari Sitas • Kelwyn Sole • Rosamund Stanford • Toni Stuart • Nathan Trantraal • Marlene van Niekerk • Bulelani Zantsi

Book details

Nuwe gedig deur Jacobus van der Riet: "Op die vooraand van Corpus Christi, 16 Junie 1990"

Die onsienlike sonJacobus van der Riet, outeur van Die onsienlike son, het ‘n nuwe gedig op Versindaba gedeel.

Lees ‘Op die vooraand van Corpus Christi, 16 Junie 1990′, ‘n gedig wat raak aan die dood van Hector Pieterson op die 16′e Junie:

Hector Pieterson word weer gedra deur die strate,
van lamppaal na lamppaal in die arms van Mbuyisa.
Hoor hoe roep die plakkate: Remember June 16.

Hector Pieterson lê kop agteroor, so swaar gewond,
sy oog gesluier, regterhand geknak oor sy maag
die bloed om sy mond gestol deur die foto.

Book details

Joan Hambidge in gesprek met Heilna du Plooy oor haar nuwe digbundel, Die stilte opgeskort

Die stilte opgeskortJoan Hambidge het met Heilna du Plooy gesels kort na die publikase van haar derde digbundel, Die stilte opgeskort.

“Die skryf van poësie is vir my ’n konfrontasie tussen myself en iets anders, ’n gebeurtenis, saak of idee, op ’n baie persoonlike vlak, in soveel eerlikheid as wat vir my moontlik is. Die neerskryf daarvan in woorde is ’n poging om my gedagtes te orden. Die woorde en die papier help mens want dit bewaar wat in jou spook en dan hoef jou kop of hart of gees nie alles alleen te dra of te onthou nie,” sê Du Plooy.

Hulle gesels oor spesifieke gedigte in dié bundel, die temas wat dikwels in Du Plooy se werk verskyn en die invloed van skilderkuns en beeldende kuns op haar digkuns. Lees die artikel:

Jy skryf dikwels oor die kwessie van ewewig of balans in die digkuns. Hoe sien jy hierdie “tegelykertydsaspek” in die digkuns?

Vir my is ritme en balans basiese aspekte van lewe. Dit is seker in hedendaagse terme bietjie vervelig en gewoon, maar dit is nie vir almal ewe moontlik om met oortuiging aweregs en skokkend te wees nie. Ek bewonder kunstenaars wat dit kan doen en so juis vernuwing bring, maar ek glo nie ek sal dit regkry nie. As mens ikonoklasties wil wees, moet jy regtig oorspronklik wees en nie net alles omdop of negativeer nie en dit verg ’n besondere soort talent.

Ek het later in my lewe eers poësie begin publiseer en daarom is dit iets anders wat ek daarin probeer vind. Dit is ook so dat ek altyd te veel kante van ’n saak sien (moes vir baie jare fokalisasie aan studente verduidelik!). Ek het dit nodig om te soek na voortgang en om uit ’n impasse uit te kom. As mens dus ’n saak van een kant af beskryf, dan weet jy daar is ’n balanserende ander kant en waarskynlik nog ’n paar ander kante ook. Kyk maar hoe groei ’n boom – as jy aan die een kant ’n tak afkap, is die balans versteur en dan sal boom met tyd ander takke uitstoot om die balans te herstel. Miskien is ek ’n bietjie soos so ’n boom en dalk is my gedigte boompies.

Boekbesonderhede