Tom Pickard lives at the edge of Fiend's Fell in the North Penine Hills on the English-Scottish border. He is the author of ten books of poetry and prose, including The Dark Months of May (Flood Editions, 2004) and Ballad of Jamie Allan (Flood Editions, 2007). A finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, Ballad of Jamie Allan was written as a libretto for the composer John Harle and performed at the Sage Gateshead in Durham, England (and recently released as a CD). It concerns an eighteenth-century gypsy musician who died in Durham jail where he was serving a life sentence for stealing a horse at the age of seventy. His reputation as a great musician was matched by his reputation as an outlaw, or to quote Walter Scott, "a desperate reprobate."
"Pickard's erotic lyrics have a terrific economy, swiftness and obscene (and alas unquotable) directness, conjuring remembered sex, shared blankets, beds, knives and regret."
- Maureen McLane, Chicago Tribune
a hill's furrow
where crows hang and skate
two black blades
slicing air and less
than a feather
Copyright © 2007 by Tom Pickard.
Reproduced by permission of Flood Editions.