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Readers are asked to send a note of any misprints or mistakes that they spot in this item to editor@pnreview.co.uk

This item is taken from PN Review 101, Volume 21 Number 3, January - February 1995.

News & Notes
The death of DAVID WRIGHT is a loss to many English poets. He was the most generous of readers who, despite his deafness, could 'hear' and correct the work of very different kinds of poet, always aware of the rhythmic dynamic of each. He was of a spirit with the writers of the 1940s among whom he emerged as an enabling spirit. His magazine X, and his work as a translator, memoirist and popular critic were valued. C.H. Sisson edited an issue of PN Review devoted to him, and the Collected Poems, assembled shortly before his death, will appear from Carcanet.

JULIAN SYMONS - novelist, poet, biographer, essayist and editor - died in November, aged 82. Though known principally as a distinguished writer of crime fiction, Symons began his literary career as a poet and editor of the magazine Twentieth Century Verse in the late 1930s, a period beautifully evoked in his memoir, Notes from Another Country. After the war he produced, as well as novels, an astonishing range of books - biography, social history, literary criticism - but consistently (as Roy Fuller said of him) 'resisted the bogus'. His courteous, painstaking generosity towards his fellow-writers was legendary, and will be much missed. [NP]

The American poet AMY CLAMPITT died in Lenox, Massachusetts, in September. She was 75. Late in emerging as a poet, she arrived fully fledged in Britain with The Kingfisher, published eleven years ago, and built on the impact of that achievement in later collections. 'The exotic is everywhere, it comes to us/before there is a yen or a need for it.' The 'exotic' in every area was her subject, a wondering earth-dweller in an age of Martians.

The poet DAWSON JACKSON, whose work appeared in PN Review and whose major poem Abidjan was praised by John Berger and Charles Tomlinson, died in October at the age of 84. His poems insist on directness, plain language and supple and suggestive lineation. Of the Auden and Spender Oxford generation, Jackson was a poet of another kind; his work never achieved the currency it should have done - and will do when the large oeuvre emerges, marked by unadorned truthfulness and an absence of the compulsory irony that carries less accomplished writers much further nowadays.

Late in 1993, writes Yann Lovelock, the Walloon writer ANDRE HENIN died in his 70th year. He was born in 1924 at the Ardennes end of Nemur province, being ordained as a priest in 1949. He became University Chaplain at Louvain and then Dean of· Gembloux. He was noted for his humour, a point brought home in the dialect funeral oration by Lucien Somme, president of the Nemur literary association: 'Lengthen your table, Lord, and lay another place.' A story writer, Henin wrote too a small, significant body of poetry.

ROBERT ROZHDESTVENSKY, the Russian poet, died in Moscow in August at 62. With Voznesensky, Akhmadulina and Yevtushenko, he lead the liberal 'youth' faction during the Khruschev 'thaw'. When it ended in 1964, Rozhdestvensky became a figure of the establishment, reaping the rewards available to a leading member of the Writers' Union. His early poetry may survive in literary terms; his later work will survive as a document illustrating the spiritual cost of following the main chance.

The Poetry Book Society's T.S. ELIOT PRIZE, now valued at £5,000, for 'the best new collection of poetry published in 1994', has announced its short-list. Absent is Alan Jenkins who 'scooped' (as the papers say) the £10,000 Forward Prize, leaving serious poetry readers open-mouthed. The T.S. Eliot line-up includes John Burnside, Eavan Boland, W.N. Herbert, Kathleen Jamie, Geoffrey Lehmann, Paul Muldoon, Tom Paulin, Peter Porter, Hugo Williams and Gerard Woodward. Martha Smart of the PBS says this is the only award where the voice of poetry readers matters. Members of the PBS can vote, and Ms Smart invites readers of PN Review to vote as well. All that is required is that, with a £2.00 discount, our readers join the PBS, with all its benefits. For information and ballot paper write to the Poetry Book Society, 26 Westbourne Grove, London W2 5RH or ring 0171 221 3754

There is 'at last' to be an IVOR GURNEY SOCIETY, to promote and explore the work of a poet composer neglected for half a century, but now, after advocacy by PJ. Kavanagh, R.K.R. Thornton and others, increasingly read and loved. Details from John Phillips, 7 Carlsgate, Hay-on-Wye, Herefordshire HR3 5BS.

'I should like to speak up on behalf of short literary forms, ' said Italo Calvino. Penguin are launching their £2.99 SYRENS, books of not more than 80 pages, small enough in their 'post-card format' to fit in a breast pocket, and vividly chosen to shorten a wait or a journey. Kleist, Baudelaire, Rilke, Beckett, Voltaire, Flaubert, Kafka, Hofrnannsthal and others feature in excellent translations with brief, authoritative introductions. Long-time readers of PN Review will recognise the Kleist and the Hofmannsthal from these pages.

The home of Laura (Riding) Jackson is finally at a permanent display site. The white wooden cottage in which she spent so many years was moved on 9 August from Wabasso to the Environmental Learning Center north of Vero Beach, Florida, and by January 1995 it will be open to the public for educational purposes.

The British Comparative Literature Association announces its Translation Competition for 1994. Prizes will be awarded to the best literary translation from any language into English. Special prizes will also be awarded for literary translations from Hebrew or Yiddish. Deadline for entries is 15 January 1995. Further details: Dr N.J. Crowe, St John's College, Oxford OX1 3JP

Following David Arkell's tribute 'Filming the Book' (PNR 95), the British Film Institute struck a new print of Jean Renoir's Partie de Campagne, based on Maupassant's story.

William Scammell writes: A friend is trying to get a Poetry Society going in Germany, and as part of that enterprise has founded a poetry library which already has several thousand volumes. He has organised a series of readings. He now wants British members to sign up to the GESELLSCHAFT FÜR ZEIT-GENÖSSICHE LYRIK E. V. (Society for Contemporary Poetry). Membership is free. The larger his membership the more likely it is that he can achieve necessary funding. Members will receive the annual magazine Marsyas, reports on the Society's activities, and other benefits. Write to Gerhard Oberlin, Gertrud-Bäumer Str. 23/2, D-72074 Tübingen, Germany.

The Rialto is celebrating its tenth anniversary with an ambitious number confirming the Arts Council's verdict that it 'meets criteria of excellence'. Details from 32 Grosvenor Road, Norwich NR2 2PZ.

This item is taken from PN Review 101, Volume 21 Number 3, January - February 1995.



Readers are asked to send a note of any misprints or mistakes that they spot in this item to editor@pnreview.co.uk
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