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Antilyrik & Other Poems
Series No.: 073
ISBN: 1-892295-75-X, Pages: 154
Czech Literature, Poetry
Vítêzslav Nezval (1900-1958) was an active participant in the European avant-garde between the two world wars. In the 1920s, he was the founding figure of "poetism," a movement of poets and artists centered in Prague. Like other major innovators, he worked through a prolific sweep of modes and genres: open and closed forms of verse, experimental plays and novels, numerous translations of his modern counterparts and predecessors, and forays as composer, painter, journalist, and social commentator. In the foreground of avant-garde activity in Prague, Nezval forged an alliance with André Breton and his Paris circle in the 1930s, founding the first Surrealist group and magazine outside of France.
Antilyrik and Other Poems brings together, for the first time in English, a sampling of some of Nezval's major poems from the 1920s and '30s, revealing the extraordinary depth and breadth of his poetic project.
Jerome Rothenberg, co-translator with Milos Sovak, is an internationally known poet and author of over sixty volumes of poems and nine assemblages of innovative and traditional poetry. He translated Federico García Lorca's Suites for Green Integer. A physician and researcher, Milos Sovak has been active since the 1960s as a book designer, typographer and the publisher of limited edition books through Ettan Press in California. He is the son of a Prague family with close personal ties to Nezval.
PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, p. 79
Some exclamatory and heartfelt, others mordant, whimsical or surreal, the pieces in Suites by Federico Garacia Lorca (1989-1936) are early, short-lined poetic sequences, here translated by the prolific Jerome Rothenberg. "In the little woodlets / with their purples & magnesiums / the princesitas jumping /are baby sparkadillos." Many of these component poems and verses by Spain's master have never before appeared in English.
The restless, energetic verse of Prague's surrealist writer Vitezslav Nezval (1900-1958) should delight and excite American readers; the urban rambles, lists and erotic promises of his Antilyrik & Other Poems echo Whitman, Apollinaire and Rimbaud: "Tell me you reed bouquet / What city in the guts was I just crossing." The above Jerome Rothenberg and Czech expatriate Milos Sovak accompany their translation with a biographical postscript.