Mar 30 2016

This poem belongs to a series of poems forthcoming in the 2016 issue of Poetry International. While I lived abroad in Penang, Malaysia,  I’d receive my news sporadically, sometimes through unconventional means. If you didn’t know it, public media sources in Penang are censored, and free speech is well, not free. I love this place for it’s beauty and the kindness of the people there, but free speech is a right, and not a privilege.

This poem is based on a headline from the Maldives, from the collection, “Headlines”

Headlines from the Maldives

State of Emergency Declared

 

“For the safety and security of

every citizen,”

tweeted his spokesman.

Yellow trigger

fish protect their piece

of the reef

with bared teeth.

 

Mar 19 2016

Ping-Pong Free Press is proud to publish as our first book, a collection of the finest Russian poetry in dual-translation: Anna Akhmatova, Vladimir Mayakovsky, Marina Tsvetaeva, Daniil Kharms, Polina Barskova.
Praise for Katie Farris’ and Ilya Kaminsky’s translations:

“Words flicker — strange, elegant — a Russian evanescence. Heat lightning pulses between lines.”

— Dana Jennings, The New York Times

“A voice of stunning originality”

— Publishers’ Weekly

“These translations are a live-wire joy to read”
— Alicia Ostriker

“Taught, lively translations that earn their place as poems in English”
— Marilyn Hacker

“In these pages we find unassailable courage coupled with the dizzying beauty”
–Sonja James, The Journal of West Virginia

Translators’ Note from the book, by Ilya Kaminsky and Katie Farris: All English versions in this book are just that: versions, notes in the margin. One should not read them as exact, authoritative translations. They are two poet’s sketches, responses, shadow- plays, homages.

To purchase a copy go here: Henry Miller Library Virtual Store

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About Ping-Pong Free Press

Ping-Pong Free Press was founded in 2016 by Ping-Pong journal EIC and Library president, Maria Garcia Teutsch. It is an imprint of the Henry Miller Memorial Library. The press is dedicated to free speech and promoting those writers in the legacy of Henry Miller and Anaïs Nin. The Henry Miller Memorial Library champions poets, writers, singer-songwriters, filmmakers and artists who often remain at the peripheries of the mainstream. Miller existed in these peripheries of American literature, but his sources and his influence extend far beyond this country, to the international literary avant-garde. It is in these peripheries where we find our truth both within and outside of our borders. We are committed to truth in all of its horror and beauty. Miller was not a pretty writer, and everything that will be published by Ping-Pong Free Press will not be pretty. The work published by Ping-Pong Free Press is not written for the market, but for the ages. It is challenging, it asks much of its reader. It’s not easy. It is, though, a vital continuation, and contribution, to Henry Miller’s literary legacy.