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The Poetry Translation Centre is dedicated to translating contemporary poetry from Africa, Asia and Latin America. Each week we bring you a new poem podcast from one of the world's greatest living poets, in both the original language and in English translation. To find out more about our work, please visit www.poetrytranslation.org. The Poetry Translation Centre is funded by Arts Council England.
 
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This week we are bringing you two poems in from a series by the Georgian poet Salome Benidze, The Story of Flying and The Story of the poor. Salome was one of two Georgian poets who toured the UK with the PTC in 2018 alongside Diana Amphidiadi. Benidze’s poems were translated by Natalia Bukia-Peters with the UK poet Helen Mort and we published a ch…
 
In this episode of the podcast, we are looking at Hindi poetry. Late last year the PTC published two chapbooks in our World Poet Series featuring Hindi poets: The Cartographer by Mohan Rana and This Water by Gagan Gill. The poems you hear on today’s podcast are by Mohan Rana who lives in Bath, England and writes deceptively simple poems circling me…
 
In this podcast, we bring you poems that take the form of messages from afar, the poets are addressing loved ones but communicating to the reader as well, the implied distance between the writer and the addressee standing in for personal and emotional distance. Kajal Ahmad was born in Kirkuk in Iraqi Kurdistan in 1967, Kajal Ahmad began publishing …
 
We start 2021 with two poets whose poems have narrative strands, one is a fairy tale complete with daemons and the other is a sketch of the life of an economic migrant who fears the host of his wife. Shakila Azizzada was born in Kabul in Afghanistan in 1964. During her middle school and university years in Kabul, she started writing stories and poe…
 
Translated by Atef Alshaer with Paul Batchelor. This October the PTC published 'Embrace' a dual-language Arabic and English collection of poems by Palestinian poet Najwan Darwish, who has been called one of the foremost Arabic-language poets of his generation. This collection includes many new poems and was translated by Atef Alshaer with UK poet P…
 
Listen to two poems from the Poetry Translation Centre Archive: 'Taste' by Asha Lul Mohamud Yusuf translated by Said Jama Hussein with poet Clare Pollard and 'He Tells Tales of Meroe' by Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi, translated by Atef Alshaer and Rashid El Sheikh with poet Sarah Maguire, selected for Black History Month. DEALS Our Black History Month bundle…
 
This week as part of the PTC’s Resistance Poets series we bring you two poems by Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi, a Sudanese poet who writes in Arabic. 'Poem of the Nile' was published in The London Review of Books one of the rare occasions the LRB has published poetry translated from Arabic and the first time they featured the work of an African poet. 'They Th…
 
Currently, the PTC is looking at Resistance Poets whose work is unafraid to tackle political issues. This week we are bringing you two pomes by Afghan poet Reza Mohammadi who writes in Dari. These were translated for the PTC in 2012 by Hamid Kabir and the Northern Irish poet, novelist and screenwriter Nick Laird. You can purchase the PTCs Reza Moha…
 
Translator André Naffis-Sahely worked with Ribka Sibhatu for 10 years leading up to the publication of their PTC World Poet series book Aulò! Aulò! Aulò! While Ribka translates her own poems from Tigrinya and Amharic into Italian, Andre translates her poems from Italian into English and works tirelessly promoting her work in the anglophone world. I…
 
The PTC has just published Aulò! Aulò! Aulò! a collection of poems and fables by Ribka Sibhatu with translations by André Naffis-Sahely as part of our World Poet Series. Ribka writes in Tigrinya and Amharic, two languages native to Eritrea as well as Italian and French. The poet calls her five languages her stepdaughters. She translates her own wor…
 
This week the podcast features two poems by Cuban poet Legna Rodríguez Iglesias, both from her 2013 collection Sucking The Stone. The first of these, The Law of Dynamics, sees the poet explaining to Galileo why he can't to the Macarena. (Why? Because it is 'a dance for Satyrs and other sex-mad creatures.') while the second poem, one of two in the c…
 
This week we have two poems by Legna Rodríguez Iglesias 'Farmer's Treasure' and 'An accumulation of dry matter that is slow after flowering but intensifies during the lactic phase' both from her collection Gimmer Spray. The exceptional skill and formal dexterity that marks Rodríguez Iglesias’s work in Spanish has been expertly brought to life in En…
 
Contemporary Cuban poetry is as diverse and indefinable as contemporary poetry in any other country, but Legna does belong to a particular generation of poets. Generación O, formed mainly of poets born after 1975, is founded on the shared experience of growing up after the fall of the Soviet Union, when Cuba was launched into extreme deprivation. T…
 
The Cuban poet Legna Rodríguez Iglesias was born in Camagüey in central Cuba in 1984 and currently lives in Miami, Florida. As well as poetry she has written theatre, short stories, children’s books and a novel. Her poetry has been translated into Portuguese, German, Italian and English. The DUAL POETRY PODCAST is focusing on her work for the next …
 
The DUAL POETRY PODCAST continues with its focus on the Cuban writer Legna Rodríguez Iglesias who burst onto the Cuban literary scene with all the ferocity of a stampeding elephant aged 19. This week we are bringing you two poems, Pure Jazz and Maggot People, that originated in her 2017 title Miami Century Fox, a collection of 51 Petrarchan sonnets…
 
This week's podcast brings you 'I must ask you' & 'Mad Dog Pack' both translated by Abigail Parry and Serafina Vick for Legna Rodríguez Iglesias' PTC publication 'A little body are many parts' which brings together poems from seven different collections of Legna's poetry. The collection has been shortlisted for the first annual Derek Walcott Prize …
 
This week the Dual Poetry Podcast is breaking its form to bring you two poems rather than one. 'Thirty heads a day' & 'Graduate' were both translated by Abigail Parry and Serafina Vick for the PTC publication 'A little body are many parts' which brings together poems from seven different collections of Legna's poetry. The collection has been shortl…
 
This week's poem is by Shakila Azizzada from Afghanistan. The poem is read first in English translation by Mimi Khalvati and then in Dari by Shakila herself. Shakila has spent many years in the Netherlands and her poetry reflects both her Afghan heritage and her European influences. She also writes in Dutch and translates her own poetry both ways. …
 
This week’s poem is by Partaw Naderi from Afghanistan. The poem is read first in English translation by Sarah Maguire and then in Dari by Partaw Naderi. Partaw Naderi studied science at Kabul University and was imprisoned in the notorious Pul-e-Charki prison by the Soviet-backed regime for three years in the 1970s shortly after he’d begun to write …
 
This week’s poem is by Reza Mohammadi from Afghanistan. The poem is read first in English translation by Sarah Maguire and then in Dari by Reza. The prize-winning poet, Reza Mohammadi - widely regarded as one of the most exciting young poets writing in Persian today - was born in Kandahar in 1979. He studied Islamic Law and then Philosophy in Iran …
 
This is one of two prayer-poems from Diana's PTC Chapbook 'Begining to speak' Diana Anphimiadi quickly distinguished herself as an unusually imaginative, original talent in the Georgian poetry scene. Her work refuses the formulaic or expected response, wrong-footing readers with its wit and delicacy. In her acclaimed 2013 collection, Personal Cuisi…
 
Today's poem is 'Aural ' by David Huerta from Mexico. The poem is read first in English translation by Jamie McKendrick and then in Spanish by the original poet. Also, this week we have details of the PTC's first-ever online workshop season looking at the work of Yoruba Poet & political activist Ọláńrewajú Adépọ̀jù. Sign up for these workshops here…
 
This week's poem is 'Empty Town' by the Chinese poet Yu Yoyo. In her afterword to Yu Yoyo's collection My Tenantless Body the poet Rebecca Tamás notes that Yoyo's concerns are often the global, concerns of those whose future is at stake in an uncertain world. All this week the poet and artist Ella Frears is joining our PTC YouTube Takeover with a s…
 
Today’s poem is Fertile Truce the title poem from Legna Rodríguez Iglesias’ 2012 collection. It was translated for the PTC in 2019 by the award-winning poet Abigail Parry and the Havana based writer Serafina Vick. The poem refers to the national flower of Cuba, the Mariposa or white ginger lily. Also in this poem, you will hear the use of the Engli…
 
here is a constant struggle in Turkey between being oneself and having to fit into a mould – a mould shaped by nationalistic values and imposed by a majority – which makes daily life extremely difficult for people who come from one of the many minority communities. This state of struggle and in-betweenness is described in the poem ‘Uniform’ – from …
 
This week’s poem is 'Orphan' by Asha Lul Mohamad Yusuf from Somalia/Somaliland. The poem is read first in English translation by Clare Pollard and then in Somali by Asha. Asha Lul Mohamud Yusuf is a powerful woman poet in a literary tradition still largely dominated by men. She is a master of the major Somali poetic forms, including the prestigious…
 
Translated by Nukhbah Langah and Lavinia Greenlaw. This week’s poem is by Noshi Gillani from Pakistan. The poem is read first in English translation by Lavinia Greenlaw and then in Urdu by novelist Kamila Shamsie. The candour and frankness of Gillani's highly-charged poems is unusual for a woman writing in Urdu and she has gained a committed intern…
 
Bejan Matur is the most illustrious poet among a bold new women’s poetry emerging from the Middle East. Her poetry engages directly and concretely with the struggles of her people, and yet there is also a mysticism in her writing, a closeness to nature, an embracing of mythology – a dialogue with God. This poem and many others that appear in Bejan'…
 
This week’s poem is by Abdellatif Laabi from Morocco. The poem is read first in English translation by Andre Naffis-Sahely and then in French by Abdellatif. The prize-winning Moroccan poet, Abdellatif Laâbi, is widely acknowledged as being one of the most important poets writing today. Laâbi was born in Fez in 1942. He began writing in the mid-1960…
 
Salome Benidze is a poet, writer, blogger and translator. Her poetry has received many prestigious awards and has been translated into more than a dozen languages. Born in 1986 in Kutaisi, Salome grew up during the turbulent decade of the 1990s when the Soviet Union collapsed and many new countries emerged from its ruins. In Georgia these years wer…
 
This week’s poem is by Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi from Sudan. The poem is read first in English translation by Sarah Maguire and then in Arabic by Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi. Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi is one of the leading African poets writing in Arabic today. He has gained a wide audience in his native Sudan for his imaginative approach to poetry and for the delicacy a…
 
This week's poem is by Bejan Matur. The poem is read first in English translation by Jen Hadfield and then in Turkish by Bejan herself. Bejan Matur is the most illustrious poet among a bold women’s poetry emerging from the Middle East. Her poetry engages directly and concretely with the struggles of her Kurdish people, and yet there is also a mysti…
 
This week's poem is by David Huerta from Mexico. The poem is read first in English translation by Jamie McKendrick and then in Spanish by David himself. David Huerta's poems frequently turn on images that are experiences in themselves. In an eerie piece, he describes a poem by Gottfried Benn: A flower fell apart in the middle of an autopsy and the …
 
This week’s poem is 'With a Red Flower' by Azita Ghahreman from Iran. The poem is read first in English translation by the poet Maura Dooley and then in Farsi by Azita. Her published book 'Negative of a Group Photograph' brings together three decades of poems by the leading poet Azita Ghahreman, it was also translated by Dooley and Elhum Shakerifar…
 
This week’s poem is by Corsino Fortes from Cape Verde. The poem is read first in English translation by Sean O'Brien and then in Portuguese by Corsino Fortes. This is part of our new rebranded weekly release: the Dual Poetry Podcast, one poem in two languages from the Poetry Translation Centre. As ever we will be releasing a translated poem each we…
 
Thanks to Kurdish poet and translator, Choman Hardi, we translated this wonderful poem by Dilawar Karadaghi over the course of three workshops at the beginning of 2005 when, appropriately enough, it was bitterly cold – though too cold for snow. And, as London faces its first ‘arctic blast’ of this remarkably mild winter, it seems fitting to choose …
 
This week's poem ‘Bucket, rope, fire extinguisher, etc’ is from by Legna Rodríguez Iglesias' collection Dame Spray, which was published in 2016. The poem refers to Cubans entering the US by crossing the border from Mexico. You can buy Legna's book 'A little body are many parts' from the PTC website. This is part of our new rebranded weekly release:…
 
Adelaide Ivánova was born in Recife, Brazil in 1982. A poet, journalist, photographer, activist and performance artist, she currently lives between Berlin and Cologne. She is the author of the collections 13 Nudes and o martelo (the hammer), the latter awarded the 2018 Rio de Janeiro Literature Prize for Poetry. Adelaide’s work has been featured in…
 
Reza Mohammadi is a prize-winning poet, prolific journalist and cultural commentator. He is widely regarded as one of the most exciting young poets writing in Persian today. He was translated collaboratively for the PTC by Hamid Kabir, editor in chief of the only Afghan fortnightly newspaper published in London, Simorgby and the Irish poet Nick Lai…
 
The poem is about the poet's love of a medieval stone tower in Istanbul, Turkey. Karin Karakaşlı’s pain can be deeply felt in most of her poems. However, alongside this we encounter an enormous amount of love for the geography she lives in, especially the city of Istanbul. Karakaşlı has an almost synergetic relationship with this city, as we can se…
 
This week's poem is 'When Winter Comes' by Azita Ghahreman from Iran. The poem is read first in English translation by Maura Dooley and then in Farsi by Azita herself. Azita Ghahreman's collection 'Negative of a Group photo', translated by Maura Dooley and Elhum Shakerifar, has been Shortlisted for the Warwick Prize for Women in Translation award. …
 
This week's poem ‘My girlfriend leaves for Cancún today ’ is from by Legna Rodríguez Iglesias' collection Dame Spray, which was published in 2016. The poem refers to Cubans entering the US by crossing the border from Mexico. You can buy Legna's book 'A little body are many parts' from the PTC website. This is part of our new rebranded weekly releas…
 
List week's poem is Empty Town by the chinese poet Yu Yoyo. In her afterward to Yu Yoyo's collection My Tenantless Body the poet Rebecca Tamás notes that Yoyo's concerns are often the global, concerns of those whose future is at stake in an uncertain world. Get a copy of this book of Yu Yoyo's book My Tenantless Body from the PTC website. This is p…
 
This week's poem is 'Earth' by Partaw Naderi from Afghanistan. The poem is read first in English translation by Sarah Maguire and then in Dari by Partaw himself. Partaw Naderi was born in Badakhshan a northern province of Afghanistan in 1331 [1953]. He studied in his birthplace and graduated from the Faculty of Sciences at Kabul University in 1354 …
 
'But' is by Azita Ghahreman from Iran. Azita Ghahreman's collection 'Negative of a Group Photograph' has been longlisted for the Warwick Prize for Women in Translation. This wonderful collection of Farsi poems was translated by Maura Dooley & Elhum Shakerifar. Order your copy here: https://buff.ly/2FiQMvL This is part of our new rebranded weekly re…
 
‘Giddy-up Johnny’ is from by Legna Rodríguez Iglesias' collection Miami Century Fox, a series of Petrarchan sonnets the poet wrote when she was finding her feet in America. This poem makes reference to Queso proceso, a kind of processed cheese eaten during Cuba's Special Period, from 1989 to 2000 when the country was struggling to survive after the…
 
This week's poem is 'Death Of A Princess' by Maxamed Xaashi Dhamac 'Gaarriye' from Somalia. The poem is read first in English translation by W N Herbert and then in Somali by Maxamed Xaashi Dhamac 'Gaarriye'. ‘Gaarriye’ (1949–2012) is regarded as one of the most important Somali poets of the twentieth century. He composed on a wide variety of topic…
 
Diana Anphimiadi is a poet, publicist, linguist and teacher. Currently a doctoral student at the linguistic institute at the Tbilisi Javahkishvili University, Diana has published four collections of poetry, Shokoladi (Chocolate 2008), Konspecturi Mitologia (Resumé of Mythology, 2009), Alhlokhedvis Traektoria (Trajectory of the Short-Sighted, 2012 a…
 
'the elephant' by Adelaide Ivánova, looks at how the human body processes trauma, drawing parallels between a mother reacting to the death of her young child and a woman experiencing sexual assault. In this recording, you will hear Ivánova talk about the origins of this poem in her friendship with an elderly German woman suffering from Alzheimer's …
 
Bejan Matur is the most illustrious poet among a bold new women’s poetry emerging from the Middle East. Her poetry engages directly and concretely with the struggles of her people, and yet there is also a mysticism in her writing, a closeness to nature, an embracing of mythology – a dialogue with God. This poem and many others that appear in her PT…
 
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