Tranter, John

Australia, (b. 1943)

Notes from the Late Tang
for Jeremy Prynne

  1. On the mountain of (heaped snow, boiled rice)
  2. I met Tu Fu wearing a straw hat against the midday sun
  3. distant bridge, restless parting, rain (in, on) the woods
  4. [line missing]
  5.  
  6. willows among white clouds (shirt, chemise, ghost)
  7. (to take the long view) parting
  8. away moving, mobile telephone handset
  9. [Bob: perhaps that’s “grief at parting”]
  10.  
  11. my humble (borrowed, not inherited)
  12. cottage (pig-sty) perspective
  13. there is a misty view (of, from?) bridge
  14. the storm took three layers of thatch, so
  15.  
  16. rain through the roof, porcine lucubrations
  17. (something?) pig oil study
  18. [Bob: “pig oil” can’t be right]
  19. burning the midnight oil in my study
  20.  
  21. phantom liberty, ghost freedom view
  22. great ancient poet wrote for radio
  23. (would have written) had he known
  24. (subjunctive) radio receiver, milkmaid attitude
  25.  
  26. silkscreen pastoral, pants metaphor
  27. looking back, sorrow (shopping) lady
  28. parting (hair) long voyage
  29. light and green woods, little pig woman
  30.  
  31. [Bob: I think that’s “young swineherd girl”]
  32. she questions (annoys) the lonely traveller
  33. unfortunate view (of, from)
  34. pig liquid telephone handset

 John Tranter. Urban Myths: 210 poems: New and Selected. Brisbane: University of Queensland Press (2006).

About the Poet:

John Ernest Tranter, Australia, (b. 1943), is a poet, a literary critic, editor and publisher. Tranter took his BA in 1970 after attending university sporadically. He has worked mainly in publishing, teaching and radio production, and has traveled widely, making more than twenty reading tours to venues in the U.S., Britain and Europe since the mid-1980s. He has lived in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane in Australia, and overseas in London, Cambridge, Singapore, Florida, and San Francisco.

Tranter developed, with Jan Garrett, the long running ABC radio program Books and Writing; and founding in 1997 the internet quarterly literary magazine Jacket which he published and edited until 2010, when he gave it to the University of Pennsylvania.

Now living in Sydney, Tranter is a company director (with his wife Lyn) of Australian Literary Management, a leading literary agency. In 2009 he completed a Doctorate of Creative Arts University of Wollongong (conferred, highly commended). [DES-04/18]

Additional information:

A random image of a pig, hog, boar or swine from the collection at Porkopolis.