Thursday, July 05, 2007

Remembering Leicester

It's a year since the death of Leceister Kyle, the priest, poet, environmental activist, Buller secessionist, and discoverer of giant snails who endeared himself to thousands of New Zealanders, and a few Brits and Indians as well, during the sixty-nine well-spent years of his life. I gathered some of the tributes that appeared after Leicester's death in brief 34 - you can read them here. My own tribute to the man was originally published on this blog. Richard Taylor dedicated his book Conversation with a Stone to his parents and to Leicester.

There are quite a few poems by Leicester floating about the internet - I've just found 'Letter to Lorine', which was originally published in Sport:

There are some words that I don't know.
Creosote is clear—
I've used it,
gestalte's not defined in my mind.
Sex is too small a word for the work it does...

With their wry mixture of authority and self-deprecation, those lines are pure Leicester. He is missed.


Blogger Jim said...

New Website for Joseph Ceravolo

Hi Maps. We appreciate your interest and link to Joseph's poetry on your blog.

We recently moved the site and updated its content. More new content will be coming in the near future and you can look forward to a complete redesign of the site, as well.

Please take a moment to change the link to Joseph Ceravolo's Poetry to

Thanks and Best Wishes,
Jim Ceravolo ceravoloj @

8:26 am  
Blogger Richard Taylor said...

Leicester was a great man and a great poet. I was deeply moved and distraught when he died. Thanks for remembering him and quoting that poem - I know it.

Lorine is Lorine Niedecker. He was fascinated by and her life and her work and her correspondence with Zukofsky.

11:27 pm  
Blogger maps said...

Ah! I didn't know that. Perhaps you should take a lead in putting Leicester's Collected Poems together, RT?

12:55 am  
Blogger Richard Taylor said...


I could do - it needs to be done -
I have some of the manuscripts - Jack is the official man - but I could help some time -

Leicester influenced me - not maybe in style but by his enthusiasm. It was because he was always doing "projects" that I started EYELIGHT.

It is sad he died so soon as he had a lot more in him to give...
I have another Blog on My Space and I might use that to write about writers on there and Leicester could be one - I could go from there...

I think by writing about poets I will find inspiration myself.

9:01 pm  

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