Poetry, Age, and the Nobel
is on the wane and has been ever since the boomers started coming
of…well, of age. The age that really counts. The age of wisdom,
reevaluation, freedom. Let’s place that age at sixty-five
but it could happen at any age, really.
I was intrigued by the announcement that Swedish poet Tomas Transtromer
had won the Nobel. Transtromer is Sweden’s most notable poet
and was considered a favorite for the Nobel in his home country,
also the home country of the Nobel Prize. Seems he and his readers
had felt he was being passed over time and time again. The LA
Times addended the words “at last” in their headline
on page three of their newspaper. Seems as if Transtromer and literature
lovers in Sweden had been waiting…and waiting. He is now eighty!
this time, the hoped-for telephone call came late, adding suspense
to the event.
eighty, some couldn’t take that kind of suspense. Further,
the stress had to be a little hard on a man who is wheelchair bound
and has lost much of his facility for speech because of a stroke.
Times also noted that the beloved poet’s output was
“slim” because he had written poetry while holding down
full time employment most of his life. This made me laugh. After
all, that’s not so unusual for a poet. We have to eat. Second,
today we live so much longer than ever before that we can easily
plan a second career (or third) after retirement. Twenty years is
a very ample span of time to perfect something new and achieve something
have to be honest here. I hadn’t heard of Transtromer until
I read that he was now a Nobel Prize winner. But I rushed right
over to Amazon to order a translation of his 288 page The Great
Enigma that includes his complete works including a short memoir
he wrote after his stroke in 1990.
one of the things the Nobel does. It brings the world of literature
closer together. In fact, it brings the whole world closer together.
And this prize in particular makes us aware of the “enigmas”
in writing and aging. I wonder if Transtromer addresses that in
his enigma collection? I can hardly wait for it to arrive in my
Tips and Tidbits
(Each month in this box, Carolyn lists a Tidbit that will
help authors write or promote better. She will also include
a Tip to help readers find a treasure among long-neglected
books or a sapphire among the newly-published.)
second edition of my Frugal Book Promoter was
just released. The
first was a multi award-winner and this edition updates
and expands (to 416 pages!) on the first.
Tip for Readers' Tip:
to find several poetry chapbooks for under $6.95
and only $2.99 as e-books.
They include the newly released
Deeper Into the Pond, a chapbook that celebrates
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