“It Drew Us Both Here,” Sutzkever translations in Lunch Ticket and Ezra; An Online Journal of Translation
Six of my translations of the Yiddish poet Abraham Sutzkever were recently awarded the Gabo Prize from Lunch Ticket, an online journal published by Antioch University in Los Angeles. I am including my favorite poem from the selection at the end of this post, but you can read them all here: https://lunchticket.org/excerpts-from-poems-from-my-diary/
Three more of my translations of Sutzkever were also just published in Ezra; An Online Journal of Translation. There is a slight error in their introduction (they identify the translations as being from Hebrew rather than from Yiddish) but I’m grateful to them for publishing the translations nevertheless!
Read them here: http://www.ezratranslation.com/current-issue/
In a few days I’ll write a new post for a special poem/translation of mine that was just published by the Yiddish Book Center.
Lastly, in upcoming news, one of my own poems is forthcoming soon in The Coachella Review, along with an essay on Paul Celan and Nelly Sachs in Poetry Northwest.
It Drew Us Both Here….
By Abraham Sutzkever
Translated by Maia Evrona
It drew us both here, both the seashell and me,
to bring us together on the seashore in Yaffo,
so that within the seashell that being could send me
a greeting from its creator in the grottos.
The shell around the small pink body is still tender in immaturity,
and warm: a shell-child born in a woman’s head covering.
Still reflecting the caress of its distant arm
and the anguished parting with faultless form.
If I could be the smith of such a seashell,
with the phantom weeping sea and struck up bit of feeling,
with its armor speckled with tiny rainbow rings
and within the rain also rushing, a half shell or a whole:
I would tear myself away from syllables and thoughts—
the ribs of the soul—and like nothing in my nature,
lift the sea onto my shoulders in thanks
and gleam like its gull.