Clifton B. “Kip” Anderson ’71 has written a full-length poetry book, Mortal Soup and the Blue Yonder, published by White Violet Press in 2013. Anderson was a gardener with the PBS show “The Victory Garden” for over 20 years and only began writing poetry in 2003, at the age of 54. He e-published an e-chapbook, A Walk in the Dark, with The New Formalist Press in 2007. This new work is the first poetry collection he’s published using ink and paper.
Anderson’s poems are strongly influenced by the world of fertility and natural growth, but they are not simply an ode to nature — they’re an examination into the more difficult issues and questions that arise in life. His style draws from New Formalism, a movement exemplified by metrical and rhymed verses that evoke classic forms of poetry. The New Formalism movement, generally speaking, is a response to the anything-goes aesthetic that governs (or doesn’t govern) much modern poetry.
Anderson was a music major at Wesleyan. On the back cover of the book, his future plans are said to include “a severe reduction of his poetic output and a concomitant increase in his noetic input.”
From Mortal Soup and the Blue Yonder:
Where woods and hayfield meet
beyond the fenced-in yard:
Our picnic ground, replete
with bone, chipped stone and shard.
Some ancient village dwelt
on this recycled place
Where recently we knelt
and said our table grace.