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Friday, June 16, 2017

Set me Free (At the Grave of Asa Benveniste)

I've been posting my latest versions of the Earl of Surrey's sonnets as I write them, because of the topicality of their subjects. But I've only left them up temporarily, during the composition process. I posted no more than 4 at any one time on the blog. So Set Me Free - one of the poems - has been and gone, but I want one revision to be acknowledged. The poem originally carried a reference:

Or up Hepstonstall’s winds with Benveniste or crashing below Hebden’s floodline.



Unfortunately this mention of Asa disappeared from the poem in the next draft. (But he's not out of mind.) That day it's 'about' was the one when we, editors and interns, went to visit Arc about the anthology Atlantic Drift. I did place a stone on the grave, in the Jewish fashion, and read one of his poems. (Asa of course was a friend of the legendary printer-publisher of Arc, Tony Ward.) Photograph taken by the excellent young poet Brendan Quinn. On the coach back James Byrne read Roy Fisher's poem 'At the Grave of Asa Benveniste'). We were there.