Thursday, 31 January 2013

Anselm Hollo (12/4/34- 29/1/13) - Shed the Fear/ Godlike/ R.I.P

Sad to hear yesterday that the poetry community had lost another fine distinctive voice.Anshelm Hollo was born and raised in Helsinki, Finland, and worked as a poet, translator, editor, journalist and teacher in Sweden, Germany, Austria, England (for 8 years), and, since 1966, the United States. He was the authour of some forty plus books of poetry. Including Maya (1970), Souourner Micrcosm(1977) and Near Miss Haiku (1990).
He became widely known for his many translations of European poetry, including the work of Russian poet Andrei Voznesenksy and the Finnish poet Penti Sarrikoski. He also translated people as variant as Jean Genet and Rosa Luxemburg. I first became aware of him I guess through his 1965 appearance at the Underground International Poetry Incarnation.Here dressed  head to toe in black  he appeared alongside Alexander Trocchi and Allen Ginsberg.
His style was strongly influenced by the American beats, and he was also adept at capturing isolated moments of perception. Often whimsical and gently satirical in tone, his poems were open-ended, valuing an ongoing human attentiveness rather than rejecting closure on the basis of theory.
He did nort care to much about prizes, he wrote  because basically that is what he needed to do. He did manage to get the title of the United States Anti-Laureate, to which he was elected by the Buffalo Poetics list back at the turn of the century.
He lived in Boulder, Colorada with his wife visual artist Dalrymple Hollo, where since 1985 he was the Professor at the Bhuddist inspired  Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University. On all accounts because of his gentle , unassuming manner he was loved by all who came across him., close friends of many other great American poets like Ted Berrigan and Robert Creeley.
He died on January 29th 2013 after post operative pneumonia aged 78. Anselm Hollo R.I.P. The lights may switch off but we carry on receiving

Shed the Fear

Who has a face sees
    the world,
but the world
    is not

to be borne-
   or only
when seen as

how did this
  come together? How
did I find you?
  so many turns

in the road
  so few of them
  How not to spin out

in hairpin turns
  of disbelief...
TheSufi martyrs

"The world
  is a wedding"
Why not go with them,

in the face of
   present carnage


when you suddenly
feel like talking

about the times
in your life when you were

a total idiot asshole you resist
the impulse

& just sit there
at the head of the table


Further Reading:
Notes  on the Possibilities and Attractions of Existence
Selected Poems 1965 - 2000
(Coffe House Press 2001)

No comments:

Post a Comment