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Ukrainian Poetry in Translation with Ilya Kaminsky, Katie Farris, Maya Chabra, Andrew Janco & Olga Livshin

November 1, 2023 · 6:00 pm7:30 pm · Labyrinth Books

Labyrinth Books; Lewis Center for the Arts; Humanities Council; Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures

Join us for a reading and discussion with a showcase of poets and translators from two new books that consider what it means to be Ukrainian during unthinkable times.

In the Hour of War: Poems from Ukraine, edited by Carolyn Forché and Ilya Kaminsky

Poetry has played an outsized role in Ukrainian culture since its inception. “Our anthology begins: ’Letters of the alphabet go to war’ and ends with ’I am writing/ and all my people are writing’,” note the editors. “It includes poets whose work is known to thousands of people, who are translated into dozens of languages, as well as those who are relatively unknown in the West.”

Today is a Different War by Lyudmyla Khersonska

Masterfully translated into English by Olga Livshin, Andrew Janco, Maya Chhabra, and Lev Fridman, few other volumes of poems capture the duality of fear and bravery, anger and love, despair and hope, as well as the numbness and deep feeling of what it means to be Ukrainian in these dark times as starkly as Livshin’s new collection.

Maya Chhabra’s translations have appeared in The White Review, Cardinal Points, and Poetry Travels. She is the author of a novel in verse, Chiara in the Dark, and several other children’s books including Stranger on the Home Front. Her short stories and original poetry have appeared in Strange Horizons, PodCastle, and various anthologies. Katie Farris is the author of the memoir-in-poems, Standing in the Forest of Being Alive. She is also the author of the hybrid-form text boysgirls, and the chapbooks A Net to Catch My Body in its Weaving; Thirteen Intimacies; and Mother Superior in Hell.  Most recently she is winner of the Pushcart Prize. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, Granta, The Atlantic Monthly, The Nation, and Poetry, and has been commissioned by MoMA. She is currently Visiting Associate Professor of Poetry at Princeton University. Andrew Janco’s translations are published in The New York Times, Ploughshares, and other journals, and are included in the anthology Words for War: New Poems from Ukraine. With Olga Livshin, he is the co-translator of A Man Only Needs a Room, a volume of Vladimir Gandelsman’s poetry. llya Kaminsky was born in Odesa, Ukraine, and now lives in the United States. He is the author of two poetry collections, Dancing in Odessa and The Deaf Republic. His works also include translations, essays and anthologies. He is a professor of creative writing at Princeton University. Olga Livshin’s poetry and translations appear in The New York Times, Ploughshares, the Kenyon Review, and other journals. She is the author of A Life Replaced: Poems with translations from Anna Akhmatova and Vladimir Gandelsman. She is a co-translator of A Man Only Needs a Room.

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