But you get far more of a sense of a literary convention and a kind of… the female characters as placeholders. Well I was reading all the Catullus poems with a sense of him writing to someone… throwing these poems out there to provoke some kind of response. To learn more about cookies, please see our. We know he wrote the elegy. I think all of them will have some relation to one of the Catullus poems in one way or another.
Her first poetry collection, The Propaganda Poster Girl, was shortlisted for Best First Book at the 2009 New Zealand Book Awards. Is that something that you came up with? The verse of Latin poet Catullus is reinterpreted for the modern world in this collection of poetry that incorporates classical ideas through domestic and maternal themes. I must have done some research before writing the first poems. I think I must have been reading them as Lesbia poems, yeah. What would she have thought? Is he travelling away to leave her? It probably is a little bit cryptic. Jackson makes Clodia a poet; she thus becomes not just a receiver of the classical tradition but a participant in it.
The poems in Catullus are full of tenderness and delight in the child's world, but they also suggest fear and anxiety at its fragility and a knowledge that children soon grow up and take on the burdens of adulthood. All are welcome, no booking required. To me, they feel like two very different ways of thinking. And that works so well because the Catullus poems themselves are so often intertwined that you do tend to read multiple poems together. The Long Road to Tea-Time, Auckland, Auckland University Press, 2000, 56pp. I think a far more important feminist project, for instance, is the work that Josephine Balmer has done translating Roman women poets that no-one except classicists is otherwise able to read. It was meant to be up to the reader to piece together some kind of a story, just as so many readers of Catullus have wanted to do.
But in terms of the narrative, the two answers seemed to undo each other. This interview was recorded on January 25th 2016 at the University of Auckland. Is Clodia entirely your creation? Although some of them have very little. So I wanted those turns as well. There would have been maybe about six poems still to be written. It was the reception rather than Catullus. I just want to write something that gives me aesthetic satisfaction and that for readers has a beauty to it, I hope? I think as a poet reading poetry, you have a sense of both the relation between the poetry and the life but also how much more the life is, what a small intersection that is.
I think I would quite like to read it now. What set you off on the path of writing I, Clodia and what prompted the change of approach to Catullus? Especially because, how are these poems being exchanged? Yes, yes, I like that. Were you thinking with that line that Clodia and Ariadne are kind of assimilated? So how could I have written them? Then I had a month in Rome in April when I could work full time on the project. The Gas Leak, Auckland, Auckland University Press, 2006, 52pp. So I guess I was looking for something to replace that, I needed another gap to fill, in the same way that there you have a triangle structured around an absence. Do you see your response to Catullus as one which is filtered through that history of other responses? For all my talk about the classics as a space out of time and out of politics and out of nation, this is very much my imagination and my voice as a New Zealand writer in the twenty-first century.
Informed by reading other things, but obliquely really. Amy Brown teaches creative writing at the University of Melbourne. I loved writing The Gas Leak so much. I want to believe both that it really happened and also that he is playing with the classics, as part of the game he is playing with Clodia, and so that sets up the challenge for her to do the same. Publicly accused of adultery, Clodia writes to one of her lovers, Caelius Rufus: So there are verses about me circulating about the city.
Or do you try as much as possible to come fresh to the material? For example, they let us know which features and sections are most popular. The sequence now proceeds chronologically; what caused you to change your approach? But as you say, you were very influenced by all those other translations, which are very international. I feel he really fully accomplished that already. The Alexander the Great reference came from following up a lead in T. Of course Clodia Metelli was a real historical person, so I am really treading on very similar territory.
And her responses range, with some being written for herself, others that she sends to people. Research and analytics cookies These cookies help us understand user behavior within our services. I thought a scene in which he takes over — rightfully — everything belonging to a more powerful man, while still appearing a hero through his chivalry towards the women, had exactly the combination of sentimentality and self-indulgence that could sketch in a sense of character. They only came in when I had more of a sense of narrative and a chronology, and so this made them important, because of where he was, at the time he must have been writing them, where they would have been placed in terms of the chronology I had constructed. Is she based on anyone? But it was very easy to find the occasion for any Catullus poem I wanted to write my own version of, our lives just kept…we seemed to be living in a Catullus sequence. Part of the reason why for me I, Clodia works is that you are filling in a gap, and the gap is: what would Clodia have said? But for me reading a male poet addressing a woman, the position of Clodia is the obvious position for me to be in.
We know that his brother died. Or do you see it more globally? But that was before I had read his book. The E-mail message field is required. I was interested in how the portrait poems I wrote in the second half of the I, Clodia collection changed how people were reading my work. I guess what I was picking up was the way the Latin can kind of enfold thought in a thought. It had to work in terms of the narrative but it also had to make the argument that would set up his poem as a response. So as someone who reads a lot of Latin and thinks in a kind of Latinish English, that was something that I pulled out from I, Clodia.
I remember very clearly the enthusiasm of talking about it and how much I was loving writing it in February. Author: Anna Jackson Publisher: New York : Auckland University Press, 2013. No, well, I suppose both in a way were much more coming fresh to the material. The most important section in the notes is the list of the Catullus poems in the particular order in which they might be read alongside my Clodia poems. While her Clodia takes a biographical approach to his poems, reading them as responses to their romance, she is also as attuned to his inter- and intratextual poetics as any modern Latin scholar. My impression as a relatively recent transplant to New Zealand is that twentieth-century New Zealand writers were grappling with this issue of what is a New Zealand identity and what does it mean.