Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Shu Ting is the first contemporary female poet to gain mainstream acceptance from the literary establishment in The People's Republic of China. After coming of age during the turbulence of The Cultural Revolution, she was the only woman in "The Misty School" of poetry, whose other prominent members faced the kind of persecution American poets can hardly imagine. Ying Xu and Micheal Swierz are graduate students at the University of New Mexico, who met and forged a relationship over Shu Ting's words. As each helped the other understand the beauty and power of the modern world's two most widely spoken languages, Michael the poet and Ying the Academic, were inspired to record the translations, giving birth to these poems. As William H. Gass has said, "translating is reading, reading of the best, most essential, kind." So we are proud to give you Ying Xu and Michael Swierz reading and translating Shu Ting.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
On the cusp of Valentine's Day, we bring you a tale of variations, Harry Thomas' "The Most Beautiful Boy in Alabama." Here, Thomas captures the many futures of beauty formed in limited geography: the wild and the fabled, the rebellious and the dull. This story has the makings of a perhaps fantastic Valentine—hot pink nail polish, sweaty hands, and a little fire. But there is more here than that, and in all it would be a dark valentine, indeed. We proudly bring you Harry Thomas.