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The Poetry Translation Centre is pleased to announce its new ​World Poet Series.

The four forthcoming attractively designed pocket-sized bilingual editions offer an unrivalled introduction to some of the world’s most exciting contemporary poets. The series places legendary figures of world letters, such as the Somali poet Maxamed Xaashi Dhamac ‘Gaarriye’, alongside highly acclaimed emerging talents like Adelaide Ivánova, the Brazilian poet, photographer and political activist.

The poets will be translated by prominent English-language poets working with accomplished bridge-translators to create living poems in English. Each author’s work will be contextualised in an introduction essay by the bridge-translator and the books will feature an engaged and critical afterword responding to the poems by an esteemed poet working in the UK. The beautiful new covers were designed by Kit Humphrey.

The ​World Poet Series celebrates the PTC’s 15th anniversary as a publisher and champion of international poetry. The PTC’s Commissioning Editor Edward Doegar calls the series “a new constellation in the making” and hopes that it will “help readers discover new poetries both within and beyond our shores”.

The World Poet Series 2019 titles will be:

the hammer and other poems by Adelaide Ivánova, translated by poet Rachel Long and bridge-translator Francisco Vilhena, featuring an afterword by Emily Critchley (Brazilian Portuguese / English, April 2019). PBS Members can order it with 25% off.

My Tenantless Body by Chinese poet Yu Yoyo, translated by by poet A.K. Blakemore and bridge-translator Dave Haysom, featuring an afterword by Rebecca Tamás (Chinese / English, July 2019).

Ask the Thunder by Maxamed Xaashi Dhamac ‘Gaarriye’, translated by poet W.N. Herbert and bridge-translator Martin Orwin, featuring an afterword by Clare Pollard (Somali / English, October 2019).

Akin to Stone by Bejan Matur, translated by by the T.S. Eliot Prize-winning poet Jen Hadfield and bridge-translator Canan Marasligil (Turkish / English, October 2019).

All four titles are available for pre-order on the PTC’s online shop now and can be purchased together at a discounted 4-for-3 price through the PTC subscription service. PBS Members will also be able to order them here with 25% discount once they're published from our website.

The Poetry Translation Centre was founded in 2004 by poet Sarah Maguire to give the best poems from Africa, Asia and Latin America a new life in the English language; to better understand and celebrate the diverse communities who have made their home in the UK; and to enrich the English poetic tradition through translation. Since 2008 the PTC has published 22 bilingual chapbooks as well as several full-length collections with publishing partner Bloodaxe Books. 

The PTC uses a unique approach to translation. They pair leading English-language poets to work with a bridge-translator to give a collaborative poetic translation. Bridge-translators provide a ‘literal’ or ‘close’ translation of the original and then work together with the English-language poet to draw out the meanings, nuances and complexities that exist in the original. The notes from the bridge-translator inform the poet-translator’s ultimate decision on how best to convey these poems in English, taking in various formal considerations, such as rhythm, meter, meaning, voice and shape, as well as cultural specificities and references.

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