Monday, January 12, 2009

Mick Imlah

Just as the TS Eliot poetry prize is to be announced, Mick Imlah, author of one of the short-listed books, The Lost Leader, has passed away. The Guardian carry the story.

I have mentioned before how hard it was to get Imlah's book, last year, but how much it was worth the wait: a little like himself making the reading public wait so long for his follow up to his first collection, Birthmarks.

When you look at the actual collection titles, you do wonder. Very sad news indeed.


Clare Dudman said...

Yes, I was just reading about Jen Hadfield winning the prize and how Mick Imlah had been mentioned because he had died...and thought - when did that happen and couldn't believe the sad coincidence.

Ms Baroque said...

Barbara, thanks for letting me know in my comments - I hadn't heard. So shocking, what can you say. Just terrible.

By the way, I have been crap at answering comments lately but yours are always appreciated!

I will get Mick's book. And Jen's. Looks like a false economy, all that not-book-buying last night. Very strange mixed vibe right now, genuine happiness all around for Jen, with this shock and sadness.

Kay said...

Very sad. He looks so alive and vital in that Guardian picture of him. Must look out for his poetry.

BarbaraS said...

It was very sudden, Ms. B, Clare, and must have been kept very quiet too: what a modest man.

Bittersweet, is what I think you'd call the news: Jen's win is a very positive step for poetry (and dare I say it for women in poetry).

Kay, if you can get hold of The Lost Leader, you'd enjoy it: it's not what you'd expect, which makes it delightful.

apprentice said...

I'm very pleased for Jen, her reading of some of the poems from this book were a highlight at Stanza two years ago. She's also a brilliant artist and photographer.

Very sad new re Mick Imlah, it is such a cruel and savage disease

Rachel Fox said...

Yes, Barbara, please dare! We can't just talk about Sylvia bloody Plath forever!
Bizarre thing - the word verification is 'mister'. Conspiracy!

BarbaraS said...

From what I've been hearing about Jen Hadfield from all quarters, she is a highly talented individual: they do not come along very often, so I am looking on her win as a very, very good thing indeed, tinted just a little by bittersweetness through Mick Imlah's death.

I look forward to re-reading her work!