the clarity of distant things
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From the publisher
Jane Duran's new book of two striking sequences takes readers into other worlds – 'gridlines', in which the life and paintings of Agnes Martin are interwoven, and 'miniatures of al-Andalus' inspired by the illuminated Cantigas de Santa María and the art and artefacts of Islamic Iberia.
The simple gridlines of Duran's couplets recall Martin's square canvasses, her precisely rendered grids and luminous stripes. Responding to individual images and to Martin's own biography, discovering lovely breaths of life entering the 'grey rectangles', the poems' intricate interlockings and brilliant images seem almost to escape the poems' formal enclosures, so that Martin's 'The Peach 1964', 'gave me back // only beige, graphite, / ink, sanity // and orchard after orchard'.