Five Poets for National Poetry Month
Keeping tabs on the poets in your city or state can be a daunting task, but poets all over the world? To help with that, we’ve put together this short but powerful list of international poetry for your edification in celebration of National Poetry Month. Come spin the poetry globe with us and see what we find!
by Idea Vilariño
Translation by Jesse Lee Kercheval
This Uruguayan poet lived in a time of great political turmoil and danger, and yet her masterwork Poemas de amor is filled with poems of aching beauty as she wrote about and to her great love, novelist Juan Carlos Onetti. Vilariño’s verse will beguile you with its honesty, richness, and urgency and, as she hasn’t been widely translated into English, this sampler we published last summer may be your best shot at experiencing her work.
by Lauren Camp
Arab American poet Lauren Camp shared two poems with World Literature Today readers back in 2013 that are included in her latest volume, One Hundred Hungers (Tupelo Press, 2016). The poems, like the book, address her father’s experience growing up in Iraq and how his exile has shaped their lives.
by Kim Hyesoon
Translation by Vanessa Falco & Kim Sunghyun
Korean writer Kim Hyesoon contributed these two poems, highly charged with visual imagery that considers the relationship between the body and the land it inhabits. Her most recent volume available in English is 2014’s Sorrowtoothpaste Mirrorcream.
by Amjad Nasser
Translation by Fady Joudah
This poem from Jordanian Amjad Nasser, entitled “A Postponed Poem for New York,” takes a fresh look at the complex relationship between the poet and the Big Apple. Nasser’s Shepherd of Solitude was translated and published in 2010, and his novel, Land of No Rain, was published to widespread acclaim in 2014.
by Mei-Tal Nadler
Translation by Rachel Tzvia Back
Israeli poet Mei-Tai Nadler published her first collection of verse, Nisuyim be-chashmal (Experiments in electricity), in 2014 and received the Teva Prize in Poetry that same year. These four poems capture some of the paradoxes of living in Israel while demonstrating her ability to universalize that experience.
Got a global favorite of your own? Leave us a comment below!