Just Out: “Canto Diurno”!

Canto Diurno, my Selected Poems (1972-2012) in French (translations coordinated by Jean Portante) and with a foreword by Charles Bernstein, was published this month by Le Castor Astral in their “Les Passeurs d’Inuits” series. Many thanks to Jean Portante, Jean-Yves Reuzeau, Jacques Darras & Charles Bernstein for their invaluable contributions. Here, an extract of Charles Bernstein’s foreword: Pierre Joris’s Cantos Diurno are never solemn, but they acknowledge the “darkness that … Read more Just Out: “Canto Diurno”!

Abdellatif Laâbi’s “In Praise of Defeat”

Archipelago books — maybe right now the finest US press truly turned toward & tuned in to the world beyond these Benighted States — has just released a gorgeous 800-page bilingual tome of the Moroccan poet Abdellatif Laâbi’s Selected Poems under the title In Praise of Defeat. The choice of poems is the author’s own, and the excellent translations from the French are by Donald Nicholson-Smith. Rather than “review” & laud … Read more Abdellatif Laâbi’s “In Praise of Defeat”

Just Out: Ashraf Fayadh’s Instructions Within

Very pleased to be back in New York, despite all — & find my copy of Ashraf Fayadh’s Instructions Within, translated by Mona Kareem (with Mona Zaki & Jonathan Wright) & published by the operating system. And what a rare occasion it is, design-wise: the parti pris of choosing to print this bilingual (Arab-English) edition the way Arabic is read & printed, i.e. from right to left. Also happy to have … Read more Just Out: Ashraf Fayadh’s Instructions Within

The Launch of KurdîLit

via Arab Literature (in English) & by MLYNXQUALEY on OCTOBER 1, 2016 • ( 0 ) Although thus far it focuses only on Kurmanjî and Kurmanjkî, two dialects of Kurdish spoken in Turkey,  the KurdîLit project promises to expand to Soranî and Goranî, enlarging the research and information about Kurdish writers across several nations: The newly launched website, officially launched at this year’s Malta Mediterranean Literature Festival, “aims to bring together and digitally archive basic … Read more The Launch of KurdîLit

A poem by Abu Sakhr al-Hudhali, as transmitted by Abu Ali al-Qali

It gives me great pleasure to publish David Larsen’s translations & introductions on this core text of 8 century poems with 10 century comments from the classical, though unhappily too little known (at least in Euro-American lands) Arab literary tradition. See also his translation of al Sukkari’s version of the same poem on my Jacket2 blog. The curtailment of artistic freedom is an unusual thing to praise. Literary translation … Read more A poem by Abu Sakhr al-Hudhali, as transmitted by Abu Ali al-Qali

Nabile Farès (1940-2016)

Just heard from his close friend, the poet Habib Tengour, that the great Algerian writer Nabile Farès died on Wednesday. A brief bio-note (revising the Wikipedia entry) for those who don’t know Farès or his work, followed by a little essay I wrote some years ago: Born in Collo, Algeria, Nabile Farès participated, during the Liberation war, in the strikes of the high school students in 1956, before joining the ranks of the National … Read more Nabile Farès (1940-2016)

BAALBECK by Etel Adnan (4)

20. I will not come back to hear Ella Fitzgerald sing over the columns. Neither will she. 21. Clouds pile up, turn into human forms on the bed of rivers an inscription always dissolves, then appears again, as the sky has already told me. 22. When no one is waiting for us any longer, there’s death, so faithful. 23. Broken souls are not anonymous, no more than the geometry … Read more BAALBECK by Etel Adnan (4)

BAALBECK by Etel Adnan (3)

10. On a wall, a lion was sculpted the first animal I loved was cold the second unveiled the incredible depth of the flesh the stone was from the Orient, love, elsewhere. 11. Watch out for the past, a poison for our fields, for these columns which are trees, regardless of spring or winter. 12. There, abroad, centuries-old oaks have heard Napoleon’s steps climbing the Rhone Valley, to fall, … Read more BAALBECK by Etel Adnan (3)

BAALBECK by Etel Adnan (2)

6. The stream of water running under Ariadne’s temple is the thread leading to the Minotaur – before getting lost in the cotton plantations in the airless labyrinth a living mass is crying, day and night the goddess has left him. I  bring him olives and wine but the god has aged. Aside from me, only the wind knows the way which links Arabia to Greece, and our thoughts … Read more BAALBECK by Etel Adnan (2)