SPANISH POET I first heard the name ‘Federico Garcia Lorca’ sitting atop a filing cabinet in a basement off the Portobello Road, at the age of five. It emerged from the babble as I listened, one Sunday morning, to the weekly meeting of exiled Spanish libertarians passionately arguing over politics, lamenting lost families, companions and IN STROUD! revolutions, loves and ... poets. Lorca was a Republican, a Catholic, a member of the cultural elite in Granada - and hardly an anarchist. But his compulsion to fuse deep, Andalucian roots with a cosmopolitan, liberating modernism shared precious terrain with that Iberian movement. In any case, his brutal execution by fascists in a hill village near THOUSANDS WAIT AT STATION FOR LORCA’S TRAIN his Granada, at the outset of the Spanish Civil War, ensured he’d become a lasting cultural and political symbol of that bloody conflict. Those early childhood experiences - grounded in an inward- looking and anguished community - have retained their potent hold on my thinking, imagination and quiet obsessions. And dancing above it all have been Lorca’s phrasing and rhythms, the moon and the refrain “¡ay!”. Lorca in England No 1 So the idea to celebrate the life, work and death of the poet February 2011 this year was as necessary as it was apt here, in the heart of The world teems with work influenced by Lorca and work the Stroud Valleys - home to radical, non-conformist, literary dedicated to him. and artistic traditions. Robust threads of words and ideas bind Laurie Lee, Gerald Brenan, the Whiteway Colony to unfolding Somebody somewhere must be preparing a Lorca tragedies in Spain, a full 75 years ago. bibliography/ discography/ filmography even as we write but here’s a very partial list of admirers. His influence on poets Carlos Ordonez writers and musicians in the USA has been profound. Lorca admired Walt Whitman and this is a link to another admirer of Whitman and Lorca, Allen Ginsberg. Henry Miller Kenneth My poetry is The musician and composer Pete Rosser was approached to do Rexroth Lawrence Ferlinghetti James Schuyler Miles Davis a commission for the Lorca in England festival, and being the Frank O’Hara Denise Levertov Pablo Neruda Diane Di Prima daughter of Carlos and with a growing enthusiasm for music Bob Dylan Tim Buckley Joan Baez Joni Mitchell Patti Smith writing, I kind of tagged along and ended up finding myself Leonard Cohen all acknowledge their debt and admiration THE WHOLE SHEBANG collaborating with Pete. I’m not sure how that happened. The but Lorca remains relatively unsung in Britain. The Pogues, a game. FEDERICO GARCIA LORCA MUSIC • ART • WORDS www.lorcainengland.org task is both terrifying and incredibly exciting. PJ Harvey and Elvis Costello are obvious exceptions but one A FESTIVAL TO CELEBRATE THE LIFE OF purpose of Lorca In England is to rectify this situation. Lorca’s LORCA IN ENGLAND Well, I’m meant to be writing about my work in progress. I work continues to cross continents but by chance as much as would say at the moment it is more of a ‘pre-progress’. So far, design perhaps, he’s fetched up in Stroud. Olé. Pete and I seem very accomplished in the art of tea drinking My life is at a certain café in the heart of Stroud, but as yet there are no STROUD ENGLAND notes written, no melody jumping out of the staves. But we have agreed to meet in two weeks to share our creations, so the pressure is on. Where to start? With Lorca’s words? With Spanish a game. music? Cuban influences? Or Spain’s dark history? New York jazz? Flamenco? I think I must discover how Lorca has influenced other musicians so I’m off to Tim Buckley, Leonard Cohen, Ben Sidran ... But I am not JUNE 2011 Emma Ordonez a game. From: From: Andalusian Spring Philip Rush Letter to Lorca Jeff Cloves lorca in england a celebration of a poet’s life Dear Federico Stroud June 2011 Habitación please forgive the familiarity of my addressing you in this way A woman’s voice you won’t have heard of me and 5th June, Lorca’s Birthday singing you may well Jazz & more at Star Anise Arts Café streaks like gentle lightning for all I know through the cool dark of a cloudy dawn get many letters which say much the same thing 14th - 19th June and in the same manner (The dates when Lorca visited England in 1929) ending a night however “Conversations with Lorca” of barrel-rolling I’ve read your poems and songs an exhibition of work by local artists and farewells and although many it is true of street-hosing escape my understanding in response to Lorca and the hub and hum others speak so directly in locations in and around the centre of Stroud of Juan’s corner bar. – and here’s a further presumption – that you seem a familiar to me For poets and writers: A cough not a ghost echoing in the narrow alleys and to address you as Señor Lorca a translation competition is another pale star. – who loved men Judges: Mark Statman & Pablo Medina and adored many women – translators of Lorca’s “Poet in New York” strikes me as unduly formal £700 in prizes, closing date 19th August 2011, and not responsive to Mountain Road – how shall I say this – the 75th anniversary of Lorca’s death the emotional honesty of your work Every bend a dagger blade ah that sounds pompous I’m afraid full details on website www.lorcainengland.org every view a lantern but you’ll get my drift trembling. I’m as sure as sure: The Moon Comes Out He Died at Dawn Every village impossible In its sweet housing of wood When the moon comes out Night of four moons, every grove a compass your voice watered the sand–dune of my heart. the bells fade into silence one solitary tree, spinning. To the south of my feet it was Spring, and impenetrable paths one solitary shadow, north of my brow bracken in flower come to light. one solitary bird. there When the moon comes out I seek in my flesh it is said the sea floods earth’s surface, the traces of your lips. by you the heart feels like an island The fountain kisses the wind in the infinite. without touching it. POETRY WORKSHOPS on translating Lorca Nobody eats oranges I carry the No you gave me even with only the sketchiest grasp of Spanish or none. under the full moon. in the palm of my hand turning transliterations into poetry • finding the voice in a poem • rhythm and music The right thing is to eat like a wax lemon only green and icy fruit. almost without colour. A series of four workshops. Each workshop stands alone but none will repeat the content of others. Each workshop led by Philip Rush with guest poets. Bibliography of Lorca texts provided. When the moon comes out, Night of four moons, Sunday March 6th 7.30 pm to 9.30 pm The Woolpack, Slad; one hundred identical faces, one solitary tree. Sunday April 3rd; Tuesday 3rd May; Wednesday 8th June, venues to be confirmed your silver coins Upon the point of a pin Cost £10 each workshop which includes the entry fee for one translation in our translation competition for weep in your pocket. my love is spinning. which there are £700 in prizes. Judges Mark Statman and Pablo Medina, American poets who have recently translated Lorca’s Poet in New York. García Lorca García Lorca Limited places and booking essential. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or ring Philip 07768471275.
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