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ISBN: 978 1 847771 99 5
Categories: 21st Century, Welsh, Women
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Published: October 2012
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Also available in: eBook (EPUB), eBook (Kindle)
His eyes are glass, each hair a needle of light.
He’s pegged by his claws to the floor like a shirt on the line.
He is a soul. He is what death is. He is transparency,
a loosening floe on the sea.
But I want him alive.
I want him fierce
with belly and breath and growl and beating heart,
I want him dangerous…
In Ice Gillian Clarke turns to the real winters of 2009 and 2010. In their extremity they redefined all the seasons for her. Nature asserted itself and renewed the environment for the imagination. The poem ‘Polar’ is the poet’s point de repère, evoking a polar-bear rug she had as a child and here resurrects in a spirit of personal and ecological longing that becomes a creative act. She lives with the planet, its seasons and creatures, in a joyful, anxious communion.
The book also includes the ‘asked for’ and commissioned poems, and the Guardian spreads Clarke has written during her time as National Poet of Wales (2008-2013). She follows in the rich millennium-old Welsh tradition of occasional writing going back to the first-known named British poets Aneirin and Taliesin in the sixth century.
Praise for Gillian Clarke
'Clarke's mellifluous new collection [A Recipe for Water] is her first since her appointment as Wales's national poet in 2008. The drop of water on the tongue, she tells us, 'was the first word in the world', and it's through water that these poems give up their stories: history is written into the Arctic's ice; myths well up from river sources; the currents on the ocean wash culture and heritage onto our shores. Watery collections have poured forth from the pens of poets from Sean O'Brien to Maura Dooley in recent years; anticipation is high for Clarke's contribution to the pool'. - Sarah Crown, the Guardian, 3 January 2009
Gillian Clarke (Touchstone Lyricist) freezes with Ice (Carcanet, RPP £9.95), read more
'This collection is a kind of seasonal Shepherd's Calendar .' January to mid-March 1947: the Big Freeze. read more
As the title suggests, water dominates Gillian Clarke's A Recipe for Water , a substantial collection of close on eighty poems - rich with her perennial themes of language, history and landscape. read more
The Carcanet Blog 10 Tasmaniacs: New Poetry by John Gallas read more Kei Miller: An Appreciation of Lorna Goodison read more Iain Bamforth: Inertia and Vertigo read more The Last Men on Mercury: Carcanet's Scottish Poets on Tour read more Lost Things: Crichton Smith’s The Exiles read more Jane Draycott in Amsterdam read more
We thank the Arts Council England for their support and assistance in this interactive Project.
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