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img439Eugene Guillevic (1907-1997) the Breton Poet, who sprung from the land of Menhirs, wind and salt water, was one of those French Poets of the Twentieth Century, still not enough known outside the borders of their native land. I like to share with you one of my favorite book finds, a discarded ex library copy, from where else, the savage socialist state of Vermont, saved from the purgatory by uninitiated hands who wanted to dump it.

The title Selected Poems by Guillevic was translated by the well known British/American poet Denise Levertov Goodman (1923-1997), and it was published in 1969 by the legendary publishing company New Directions.

img440 img441 Back to Guillevic’s poetry where we can find the taste of salt left by the ever blowing wind around the stones found across this landscape. That wondrous corner of France where salt, wind and water meet with soil worn throughout the ages before men counted time.

img442There is some simple truth in the words of a man close to his place in space and time and tied to the land he came from, yet ever so in tune with his surroundings.


img443In researching this poet and his world, I came across another poet and writer who wrote a superb post on Guillevic, the Scottish author Jim Murdoch whose own work I have not read, but whose post on Guillevic is found at this link.

For those who do speak French below is a Youtube interview in which Guillevic discusses his roots in the Breton village Carnac where his was born. In 1988 the poet was the recipient of the Le Prix Concourt for poetry.