Tom Pickard


Tom Pickard

Tom Pickard (born 1946, Newcastle upon Tyne, England) is a poet, radio and film maker who was an important initiator of the movement known as the British Poetry Revival.

Pickard left school at the age of fourteen. He met Basil Bunting and was instrumental in the older poet's return to writing in the early 1960s.

From 1963 to 1972, Pickard ran the Morden Tower Book Room, where he organised a series of readings by British and American modernist tradition poets. He also ran the Ultima Thule Bookshop between 1969 and 1973. During this period, he also travelled in the United States to renew friendships with some of the American Morden Tower readers, including Allen Ginsberg, Robert Creeley and Ed Dorn.

In 1973, Pickard moved to London and started writing radio and documentary film scripts. His film credits include "Jarrow March" (1976), "We Make Ships" (1988), "Birmingham is What I Think With"--about the poet Roy Fisher(1991) and "The Shadow and the Substance" (1994). He directed the last three of these films. In 1974, his television play "Squire" was broadcast by the BBC.

Pickard's poetry owes much to his reading of Bunting and of the Black Mountain poets, but it is also rooted in his own urban working class Northumbrian background. His publications include "High on the Walls" (1968), "The Order of Chance" (1971), "Hero Dust: New and Selected Poems" (1979), "Tiepin Eros: New and Selected Poems" (1994)," fuckwind ("1999)"Hole in the Wall: New and Selected Poems" (2002, "The Dark Months of May ( [2004] )" and "Ballad of Jamie Allan ( [2007] )". The last three books published by Flood Editions.

In 2004 he was commissioned by Sage Gateshead and Folkworks to write a libretto, Ballad of Jamie Allan, for the composer John Harle. The opera was premiered in 2005. A CD of Ballad of Jamie Allan (with Omar Ebrahim, Sarah Jane Morris, Kathryn Tickell, Bill Paterson, the Northern Sinfonia with Steve Lodder and Neil MacColl).

Pickard has worked throughout his career with many musicians including Alan Hull (of Lindsifarne), Peter Kirtley and Liane Carroll, Ben Murray and Rosie Doonan, Tarras, Paul McCartney amongst others.

External links

* [http://mordentower.org mordentower.org]
* [http://www.lindisfarne.de/interviews/ivtp0203.htm An interview on "Squire"]
* [http://balladofjamieallan.blogspot.com/ Ballad Of Jamie Allan]
* [http://poetryfoundation.org/harriet/2007/11/make_this_my_default_location.html#more/ Poetry Foundation ]


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