Claire Lajus

- France -

Claire Lajus is a poet, a translator of Turquish, and both the founder and leader of the online review Ayna that promotes contemporary Turquish poetry.

For five years she taught French at the Samsun University in Turkey, then at the Alliance Française in Bordeaux. She is now dedicated to translating and writing.


She writes poetry mainly, but also short stories and a novel is underway. Her poems have been published in various reviews (Nouveaux Délits, Soleils & Cendre, Traction-Brabant, A L’index, La Main millénaire, Verso, In toto…). She wrote L’Ombre remue, a poetry book released by Éditions La Crypte in 2018; Aux Aguets, a part of the Levée d’ancre series at L’Harmattan in 2020. Two other poetry books are in progress.

Poetry writing stems from necessity for Claire Lajus, her poems are like a compass in her life. They help her understand the world better et know oneself better, they represent her lever for a better life and keeping her eyes wide open.


Sometimes her poetry is exploring the intimate, the invisible fiber of the being within one’s entrenchments, and sometimes the world pulse, the weirdness and injustices of it. The poem connects her to a vital space, to the redemption of words throughout the power of words that get lost, reunite et rebel like wounded creatures, at times illuminated ones. Knowing the limits of adventure, she recreates meaning by plunging into the multiple forms of the living, be it made of delicate skin or rock. With successive strokes she perceives the essence of the surrounding, first with contemplation, a merciless awareness of facts or their loss (a question suddenly lighted and instantly hushed), then with empathy whereby, as she says, the poet clings to the story.


Among the recurring themes of her poetry, we often find pairs, for instance Time with absence of Time -an eternal instant- oblivion with memory, wanderings and stillness, frailty and strength.


The poem is either porous, surly or drilled. Claire Lajus attributes importance to the musicality of language, she chews her words at length before writing them down so as to shape them into a poem. Her poetry is open onto the world and others, “we” is more frequent than “I”.

They are short poems often, but they form a succession, echoing each other. It is a poetry of senses and matter.


Outstanding in her poetry is the room for the non-human. Wildlife, flora, mineral spaces, mountains are ever-present, for all these have an effect on the poet’s sensitivity and her understanding of the world. They are her allies in the face of both the violence of the world and her life companions.


Often with economy of words, the poet seeks an image to affect and create a vision for the reader. Through vision she wishes to transmit what emotion has taught her. Thus, in her poetry, both the gaze and brief gesture reshape the poem. One of her collections is titled “On the watch” (Aux aguets), because what matters is the author’s physical posture seeking to flush out the accuracy of an emotion, whether it be existential or whipped by the violence of an unsustainable reality.


With Claire Lajus are found both outrage (facing the world order) and astonishment (metaphysical) ; they are the two strands of her poetry.