Srečko Kosovel

Tortoise

-translated, from the Slovenian, by Ana Jelnikar and Barbara Siegel Carlson

 

It is only in poems that I realized what a poet is. A biography, forever obscured from the prying literary historian, comes out of a dark corner and steps into full view revealing the face for what it is. A weary, travelling face. The eyes wells of understanding, hands buckets that never tire of ladling life’s blood. The poet’s a botanist. He wanders around the Karst and his herbarium’s a collection of dried up flowers; he goes to the front and his journal is full of skulls.

 

 

Translators

Barbara Siegel Carlson is the author of 2 books of poetry Once in Every Language (2017) and Fire Road (2013) a  and chapbook Between this Quivering. She is co-translator (with Ana Jelnikar) of Look Back, Look Ahead, Selected Poems of Srečko Kosovel and co-editor (with Richard Jackson) of A Bridge of Voices: Contemporary Slovene Poetry and Perspectives. (2017). Her poetry and translations have appeared in Salamander, The Carolina Quarterly, Mid-American Review, Lake Effect, Agni and others. She lives in Carver, MA.

 

Ana Jelnikar is the foremost translator of contemporary Slovenian poetry into English. Her most recent publications include Look Back, Look Ahead: Selected Poems of Srečko Kosovel (2010) co-translated with Barbara Siegel Carlson, Meta Kušar’s poetry collection Ljubljana (2010) co-translated with Stephen Watts) and Iztok Osojnik’s selected poems Elsewhere (2011) co-translated with Maria Jastrzȩbska). She is also the author of Universalist Hopes in India and Europe: The Worlds of Rabindranath Tagore and Srečko Kosovel (Oxford University Press, 2016). She lives in Ljubljana, Slovenia.

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