Reading: Under the poplars by Cesar Vallejo
The Peruvian poet
Reading: A Life by Edith Södergran
Edith Södergran (1892-1923) published 5 collections of poetry. She was one of the first modernists of Swedish-language literature. Browsing her poetry, I liked this one, called 'A life'. I read an English translation by Averill Curdy that goes as follows: A life That the stars are adamant everyone understands— but I won’t give up seeking joy ...
Reading: The second Madrigal by Anna Swir
Today my eye fell on Polish poet Anna Swir (Świrszczyńska) (1909-1984). I read the translation by Czeslaw Milosz: The Second Madrigal A night of love exquisite as a concert from old Venice played on exquisite instruments. Healthy as a buttock of a little angel. Wise as an anthill. Garish as air blown into a trumpet. Abundant ...
Reading: Via Velasca by Leonardo Sinisgalli
Leonardo Sinisgalli (1908-1981) studied engineering and mathematics before he became a poet, and they appear to call him the "engineer poet". Here is a
Reading: I hear that the axe has flowered by Paul Celan
Today, let's dive into a mysterious poem by the great Paul Celan, in a translation by Michael Hamburger. I hear that the axe has flowered I hear that the axe has flowered, I hear that the place can't be named, I hear that the bread which looks at him heals the hanged man, the bread ...
Reading: St. Sava’s Journey by Vasko Popa
The following poem by Serbian poet Vasko Popa (1922-1991) in the translation of Anne Paddington, did impress me. St. Sava's Journey He journeys over the dark land With his staff he cuts The dark beyond him into four He flings thick gloves Changed into immense cats At the grey army of mice Amid the storm ...
Reading: Meeting by Marina Tsvetsaeva
Marina Tsvetsaeva (1892-1941) I read Meeting in an English translation by
Reading: Verwandlung by Georg Trakl
Today I read a poem by my famous German expressionist, Georg Trakl (1887-1914). I couldn't find a translation of die Verwandlung online, so I created one myself. There is a website where you can contribute poetry translations, and I
Reading: Kinaxixi by Augostinho Neto
Today, I wanted to read a poem by Hugo von Hofmannthal or Wisława Szymborska, but I couldn't find (the time to make) a good translation of the German genius and I'm not fond of the Polish Nobel Prize winner. So I read a ne else sitting next to him. Happens every day, on thousands of squares ...
Reading: L’Orangerie by Yves Bonnefoy
The French poet Yves Bonnefoy (1923-2016) published major collections of poetry throughout his livetime. He lived, and died, in Paris in 2016. Today, I read a poem headed 'L'Orangerie'. I didn't like the
Reading: Tourist by Yehuda Amichai
I like the accessible poetry of
Reading: It Was A November Of Bitter Rain And Snow Blackened By Use
Today I read a poem by the Lebanese poet (and former miss Beirut) Venus Khoury-Ghata in the English translation by
Reading: White Lie by Abbas Beydoun
Today I read the poem White Lie by the Lebanese poet Abbas Beydoun, born in 1945. As usual, I write freely why I think this poem is a good one. The truth is also blood. And it might be a piece of tongue or someting severed from us. We might find it in semen or ...
Reading: Pieces of Shadow by Jaime Sabines
Today I found a poem by the Mexican poet Jaime Sabines (1926-1999) in a translation by W.S. Merwin. According to Octavio Paz he was one of the greatest. The original Spanish poem can be found
Reading: Forlorn (忧 郁) by Bei Dao
Emboldened by my anthologizing habit, today I discover the Chinese poet Bei Dao (a pseudonym that means "northern island"). As usual, I'll say what I like about this poem. I take the elevator from an underground parking lot up to sea level deep thoughts continuing up, through blue color like doctors you can't stop them, ...
Reading: M – Black Monday by Marcin Świetlicki
Today there is this compact poem by Marcin Świetlicki for our ideosyncratic Polish: przedzieleni światłem. I think it is a brilliant metaphor for its strangeness and its re-interpretation of loss as the completion of 'everything'. The poem says nothing about the woman's motives to reject her suitor (I assume the gender because the author is ...
Miroslav Holub: The end of the world
I would like to publish an eclectic anthology. I don't know yet who will be included or excluded, it is a journey of first steps. Today, I try to say what I like about this little verse by the Czech immunologist and poetic giant Miroslav Holub, called 'the end of the world'. The bird had ...