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In the Wake of the Day
RRP: GBP 9.95
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Price: GBP 8.96
This title is available for academic inspection (paperback only).
ISBN: 978 1 847770 44 8
Categories: 21st Century
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Published: January 2010
216 x 135 x 10 mm
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Also available in: eBook (EPUB), eBook (Kindle)
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What are we to make of these fragments,
These hisses and whispers? Who were
These people who were buried in uncounted chambers
Hacked into the sheer side of a precipice,
Which in their extinct language, they called ‘round’,
Which it was not, great wall of sorrow and forgetting.
They were perhaps undistinguished by the standards
Of their time, producing no poets or philosophers
Whose names history has recorded, but they lived.
In the Wake of the Day is a book of memories and journeys; from the chaotic energy of urban life in modern Istanbul, where John Ash lives, to the ruins of vanished civilisations; from personal incident to the narratives and vacancies of cultures. Ash inhabits the fertile and ambiguous territory where East and West meet. We ‘know and do not know’ the past. In an ‘imperial city without empire, place of paradox’, time too becomes fluid. The ancient, half-imagined past of Ur, Alexandria, Cappadocia coexists with a contemporary world in which ‘tank tracks are driven over Babylon’.
At the centre of this collection are John Ash’s versions of poems by the great Alexandrian C.P. Cavafy. Working with Cavafy’s voice, Ash expresses his own urbane intelligence.
Cover photograph: Beyoğlu Street, Istanbul © Dan Auger Cover design StephenRaw.com
In Jean Dubuffet’s Crimson Landscape
Near the Euphrates
Poem: ‘I never really wanted…’
Lines Written in a Hotel Room in Afyon
The Towel of Alyattes
The Women of Kars (or Some Other Places I Know and
Do Not Know)
Fever of Kleitos
The Battle of Magnesia
The Gods in their Wisdom
Disillusionment of Demetrius Soter
The Triumph of John Kantakouzenos
A Byzantine Nobleman Writing in Exile
In a Syrian Harbour
The Bergamot Tree
In the Wake of the Day
Finding Prostanna (2)
Two Poems with an Uncritical Apparatus
Prose for Ebubekir Akbulut
Praise for John Ash 'A little querulous, perhaps? Never mind. This may be the most auspicious debut of its kind since Auden's.'
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