Franz Kafka

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Jersey Blues, Selected Poems, published today!

The much-awaited Jersey Blues, Selected Poems now published: available as classic paperback book as well as e-book, and on the iBookstore.

Cover of Jersey Blues, Selected Poems, 2012
A foreword from the author:

    In my many years in America, like a pilgrim, or a spiritual vagrant, crisscrossing the country—always rolling on the very fabric of the continent: westwards and eastwards, to the eternal oceans, and from the northern vast plains down through the Appalachian, to the deep recesses of the lowlands, to the swamps—infallibly enough, I would always return to my dwelling in Princeton. 
    Many a time the lonely night was devoted to the contemplation of the moon of New Jersey, as I licked the wounds of a sore soul. Always wondered I, how different that pale, ghostly circle of a moon was, from the one I encountered elsewhere above the magnificent land that I had been scampering about, and from the lost moon of my childhood.
    Yet, with adulthood—or maturity—seeing at last the rise and fall of earthling matters, I would flinch, my heart recoiling, as from something unpleasant. Thus, through the jaundiced, estranged buoy in the sky, I would recall past memories, and hold out my quivering hand to reach over to the always-receding mysteries of existence. These are, in essence, my "Jersey Blues."

Sunday, December 16, 2012

"Fior di Neve" (Snow Blossom), by Umberto Saba and "Dust of Snow", by Robert Frost, an intriguing parallel

Robert Frost and Umberto Saba were contemporary writers, who lived between the last quarter of the nineteen century and the midst of the twentieth century. Although quite different in terms of background, language, and poetic sensibility, here are two vivacious short poems of theirs, both on the theme of snow, that I am thrilled to present as an intriguing parallel. They are, respectively, Snow Blossom and Dust of Snow; the former is sort of dream-like and transcendent, the latter rather displays a shade of darkness, yet pervaded by a vein of humor. I offered further below the Italian translation of Robert Frost's original poem, as well as the English translation of Umberto Saba's original text in Italian, to accommodate both international and Italian readers.

Umberto Saba: the Collection of Poems. Umberto Saba's Poetry Translated in English. Umberto Saba: "Il Canzoniere" (The Songbook). 

Available as printed book on  Amazon and as ebook on Amazon KindleLuluKobo,
Apple iBooks, Google Books and all major plarforms.

Cover of Umberto Saba's Poesie, First Edition, 1911
 Dust of Snow, original manuscript, 1958

          Snow Blossom, by Umberto Saba                                    

Up in the heavens all the angels
saw the bare fields
without leaves nor flowers
and they read in the children's hearts
how they love the white things.
So fluttered they the wings tired of flying
and then descended lightly lightly
the blossomed snow.

Dust of Snow, by Robert Frost

The way a crow
Shook down on me
The dust of snow
From a hemlock tree

Has given my heart
A change of mood
And saved some part
Of a day I had rued.

Fior di Neve, by Umberto Saba, original text in Italian, and the Italian translation of Dust of Snow, by Robert Frost.