Sunday, January 08, 2006

Robin Holcomb, New Poems

Just got home from a very nice concert at Hugo House by Robin Holcomb and her chamber ensemble, of music she composed from several poems by Nazim Hikmet. Holcomb has a wonderful lyric voice, and a very humble and self-deprecating stage presence, and the music from the ensemble (violin, viola, cello, trumpet, clarinets) was wonderful. I want to go and read Hikmet's poems again, especially, "On Living," "Angina Pectoris," and "Regarding Art." Thank you again to old friends Ian and David (who were fresh from a trip to Bhutan), for inviting Dean and me. I can't believe it has been almost 20 years now that we have known each other.

I was working much of the morning today on two new poems simultaneously. I would just go back and forth from the one to the other, which is odd, as they are very different poems. One is tentatively titled "Have I Wasted My Life on Poetry?" and is more of a lyric meditation; and the other is titled "Cambodian Dancing" or "Cambodian Wedding," I'm not sure which yet, and is more of a narrative. I think they are both keepers . . . we'll see.

3 comments:

Erin B. said...

Good luck on the new poems, Peter. Hikmet is one my favorites. Dark and oddly light simultaneously. I'd suggest his selected works with a foreward by Carolyn Forche.

A. D. said...

ooh i want to read "have i wasted my life . . ." so badly.

Anne said...

I have an old, old CD by Robin Holcomb -- her self-titled one, from about 1990, I think (okay, so it's not that terribly old0 -- that I used to listen to quite a lot. It always struck me as being very intelligent music for some reason, music that made me want to write, music that made me want to go to grad school. (It was one of those years, I guess.) Anyway, cool to hear she is doing such interesting stuff nowadays!