Friday, February 20, 2009

C.K. Stead’s Collected Poems 1951 – 2006,
published by Auckland University Press and in the UK by Carcanet

The Bookman reckons that New Zealand man of letters C.K.Stead and his publishers must be delighted at the ongoing universal acclamation being accorded his latest publication.

I have just come across the following piece, with the quote from the noted British novelist and biographer Miranda Seymour, in the Carcanet e-newsletter:

C.K. Stead’s Collected Poems is a milestone in English-language poetry: half a century’s work from fourteen collections, along with early uncollected poems. A New Zealander, Stead’s family connections in that country start in the early 1830s, and his poems reflect this background. He has also travelled widely, and the poems have travelled with him.
He is a writer - novelist, literary historian and critic, as well as poet - who occupies literature like a landscape, his poetry deep-rooted in classical and European literary traditions, at ease in an international literary community. Collected Poems reveals a craft deepening decade by decade, a growing delight in its supple possibilities.
With C.K.Stead’s Foreword and a section of his notes illuminating the background to many of the poems, this Collected Poems is an essential compendium of the poetry of a major writer.
'Few poets can aspire to the combination of intelligence, lyricism, passion and honesty that are the hallmarks of Karl Stead’s work. Born in New Zealand, Stead is revealed by his poetry as an intuitive, thoughtful and sensually responsive vagabond of the world, one whose rare gift it is to inhabit the moment - be it past or present - and bring it, burning, into life. He is a poet who can speak, not to one country, but to us all.' - Miranda Seymour

Interesting to note the Carcanet cover, left, uses a Colin McCahon painting.
My guess is C.K.Stead will be pretty chuffed about that too.

No comments: