viernes, 17 de julio de 2015

AL PURDY [16.583] Poeta de Canadá


Al Purdy  

Alfred Wellington Purdy  
Nació el 30 de diciembre de 1918. Murió el 21 de abril de 2000. 
Poeta canadiense en lengua inglesa, nacido en Wooler, Ontario, en 1918. Es uno de los poetas que más ha marcado el rumbo de las jóvenes generaciones.

Pasó su infancia en Trenton, Ontario, y fue educado en el Albert College, Belleville. En 1930 fue a Vancouver, donde trabajó por algunos años en una fábrica de colchones y en establecimientos similares. Durante la Segunda Guerra Mundial sirvió en la Royal Canadian Air Force. Viajó por Canadá, Cuba, México, Grecia, Turquía, Italia, Francia, Japón y África. Le otorgaron el premio del Gouverneur Général por Cariboo horses (1965).

Además de su obra poética, Purdy escribió obras para la radio y la televisión, y numerosos ensayos sobre sus viajes que fueron publicados en Maclean´s y Weekend Magazine y recogidos en un volumen bajo el título de No other country (1977). Editó los libros de poesía de Milton Acorn, I´ve tasted my blood (1969), y de Andrew Suknaski, Wood Mountain poems (1976); y compiló las antologías Fifteen winds (1969), Storm warning (1971) y Storm warning II (1976).

Maestro del humor y la ironía, abordó la temática canadiense desde una posición autobiográfica e incluso confesional, pero marcada por un lenguaje cortante y coloquial. Durante los años sesenta, se abrió a un mayor experimentalismo formal en la línea de la "Open form".

Dentro de su producción poética, conviene destacar The enchanted echo (1944), The crafte so longe to lerne (1959), Pressed on sand (1955), Emu, remember (1955), Poems for all the Annettes (1962), North of summer: poems from Baffin Island (1967), Wild grape wine (1968), In search of Owen Roblin (1974), Being Alive. Poems 1958-1978 (1978) y The stone bird (1981).



El poema de Al Purdy, Tentativa:

El único gesto desafiante del hombre
ante el universo hostil o indiferente
es pararse afuera en la noche
después de la cantidad requerida de cervezas
y con una elegante y enorme parábola
tratar de mear las estrellas fracasando magníficamente
fracasando magníficamente.






Mantuvo correspondencia con el poeta Charles Bukowski. 

Bukowski las publicó con el título Las cartas de Bukowski y Purdy: una década de diálogo 1964-1974 (1983). 

La fina corteza del melocotón: las cartas Bukowski-Purdy

Publicado por Luis Ingelmo

Este epistolario entre el borrachín de Los Ángeles y el canadiense, no menos dado a la ebriedad, Al Purdy, recoge la correspondencia que ambos poetas intercambiaron durante los años ’60 y ‘70 del siglo pasado y que, entre chascarrillos y cuchicheos, dio como fruto un texto lírico y, en ocasiones, sobrecogedor. En él, sobre todo, se masca el juego de la ficción y la realidad con el que tanto disfrutaban, ése de los álter egos y los personajes detrás de las palabras. Creo que, de las 37 de la colección, la carta con la que más he disfrutado ha sido la nº 18, una verdadera bomba de relojería que te explota en los ojos y en las uñas. Me llama la atención también la nº 24, en la que Bukowski menciona a William Wantling, en una época de su vida en la que aún le consideraba “uno de los suyos”, es decir, un poeta con garra y fuerza y toda la bravuconería machota de la que un Bukowski cuarentón y pendenciero se servía para irse labrando su imagen de cabrón degenerado. Y tengo dos noticias, una buena y otra mala; la mala es que no hay traducción al español de este epistolario; la buena es que sé, de muy buena tinta, que hay por ahí un traductor fanfarrón que se ha propuesto que alguna editorial acabe por aceptarle el texto. Ya veremos.

[Seamus Cooney (ed.), The Bukowski/Purdy Letters: A Decade of Dialogue, 1964-1974, Sutton West, Ontario, & Santa Barbara, CA: The Paget Press, 1983, 117 pp.]



O poeta morto

Modificou-me na placenta
o irmão morto antes de mim
construindo um lugar no útero
ao saber que eu estava por vir:
escreveu palavras nas paredes de carne
pintando uma mulher dentro da mulher
sussurrando uma débil canção de ninar
que ressoa em meu coração cego ainda

Os outros eram lenhadores
pugilistas do agreste e agricultores
suas mulheres mansas e meigas
deles nada sobrevive
apenas uma imagem dentro da imagem
um fogão, uma chaleira fervendo
-- o que mais explicaria a mim mesmo
de onde essa música vem?

E agora em minhas andanças:
no deslumbre lírico de Alhambra
onde mouros construíram poemas de pedra
um rosto pálido de homem espreita
-- a sombra na caverna de Platão
lembra o pequeno morto
-- e no pálido azul de Samarcanda
as palavras lhe vêm lentamente
-- eu me lembro da música do sangue
na Rua dos Ourives

Dorme suavemente espírito da terra
enquanto dias e noites dão-se as mãos
e tudo se torna uma coisa só
espere calmamente irmão
mas sem contar que isso aconteça
que um grande brado anuncie a ressurreição
espere apenas um frágil murmúrio
de pássaros se aninhando e bosques brotando
a contar suas histórias passageiras
e saberá de onde vieram as palavras

(Al Purdy, em Beyond Remembering, 2000. Trad. livre MP)




The Dead Poet

I was altered in the placenta
by the dead brother before me
who built a place in the womb
knowing I was coming: 
he wrote words on the walls of flesh
painting a woman inside a woman
whispering a faint lullaby
that sings in my blind heart still

The others were lumberjacks
backwoods wrestlers and farmers
their women were meek and mild
nothing of them survives 
but an image inside an image
of a cookstove and the kettle boiling
— how else explain myself to myself
where does the song come from? 

Now on my wanderings: 
at the Alhambra's lyric dazzle
where the Moors built stone poems
a wan white face peering out
— and the shadow in Plato's cave
remembers the small dead one
— at Samarkand in pale blue light 
the words came slowly from him
— I recall the music of blood
on the Street of the Silversmiths

Sleep softly spirit of earth
as the days and nights join hands
when everything becomes one thing
wait softly brother
but do not expect it to happen 
that great whoop announcing resurrection 
expect only a small whisper
of birds nesting and green things growing
and a brief saying of them
and know where the words came from




From: Beyond Remembering - The collected poems of Al Purdy. 2000.





House Guest

For two months we quarrelled over socialism …. poetry …. how to boil water
doing the dishes …. carpentry …. Russian steel production figures and whether
you could believe them and whether Toronto Leafs would take it all
that year and maybe hockey was rather like a good jazz combo
never knowing what came next
Listening
how the new house built with salvaged old lumber
bent a little in the wind and dreamt of the trees it came from
the time it was traveling thru
and the world of snow moving all night in its blowing sleep
while we discussed ultimate responsibility for a pile of dirty dishes
Jews in the Negev …. the Bible as mythic literature …. Peking Man
and in early morning looking outside to see the pink shapes of wind
printed on snow and a red sun tumbling upward almost touching the house
and fretwork tracks of rabbits outside where the window light had lain
last night an audience
watching in wonderment the odd human argument
that uses words instead of teeth
and got bored and went away
Of course there was wild grape wine and a stove full of Douglas fir
(railway salvage) and lake ice cracking its knuckles
in hard Ontario weather
and working with saw and hammer at the house
all winter afternoon
disagreeing about how to pound nails
arguing vehemently over how to make good coffee
Marcus Aurelius …. Spartacus …. Plato and François Villon
And it used to frustrate him terribly
that even when I was wrong he couldn’t prove it
and when I agreed with him he was always suspicious
and thought he must be wrong because I said he was right
Every night the house shook from his snoring
a great motor driving us on into daylight
and the vibration was terrible
Every morning I’d get up and say “Look at the nails-
you snored them out half an inch in the night-”
He’d believe me at first and look and get mad and glare
and stare angrily out the window while I watched
10 minutes of irritation
drain from his eyes onto fields and farms and miles and miles of snow
We quarreled over how dour I was in early morning
and how cheerful he was for counterpoint
and I argued that a million years of evolution
from snarling apeman have to be traversed before noon
and the desirability of murder in a case like his
and whether the Etruscans were really Semites
the Celtic invasion of Britain …. European languages …. Roman law
we argued about white being white (prove it dammit) …. & cockroaches
bedbugs in Montreal …. separatism …. Nietzsche …. Iroquois horsebreakers on the prairie
death of the individual and the ultimate destiny of man
and one night we quarreled over how to cook eggs
In the morning driving to town we hardly spoke
and water poured downhill outside all day for it was spring
when we were gone with frogs mentioning lyrically
Russian steel production figures on Roblin Lake
which were almost nil
I left him hitch hiking on #2 Highway to Montreal
and I guess I was wrong about those eggs









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