I would like to announce the arrival of my fourth chapbook, a collection of sixteen poems, including six poems (previously unavailable in translation) by forgotten French symbolist Saint-Pol-Roux in English translation.
Right now it’s only available on the website of Barefoot Muse Press, but in a few days it should be up on Amazon, and I will provide a link to that page then. (Note: I make more money if you buy it from the Press–just saying!)
Those of you familiar with my oeuvre may well be saying, fourth chapbook? Yes, it’s true. The first, Mobius Strip, was printed in very limited numbers (home-produced) back in the UK circa 1994. I know of the whereabouts of 2 copies, and it is not for sale. (To be honest, I now think most of the poems suck!)
Swimming and Selected Sonnets are of course available from Maverick Duck Press.
Of course, you may rightly observe that this me using my new micro press to shamelessly self-publish my own work. Yep! And I wouldn’t necessarily do it with my own original poems, but translations are another matter, in my opinion. Goodness, it’s hard enough to get a formal chapbook out these days! You can forget a book of translations! Yet, Saint-Pol-Roux’s work is simply not available in translation online, or in a decent, widely available print version. (Try it! Google him!) I own The Penguin Book of French Poetry (1820-1950), which contains execrable word for word prose translations of 4 of his poems, and Atlas Press in the UK lists an out of print version of Pauses in the Procession, translated by Andrew Mangravite. That’s it.
But now there’s my chapbook, and I do own a badly photocopied version of Les Reposoirs de la Procession myself. Maybe, one day, I could translate the whole thing…
Hello. I realize that you were probably joking when you said that perhaps in the future you might translate all of Les Reposoirs de la Procession by Saint Pol Roux, but I’m writing to you any way to encourage you to do so. I love the poetry of Saint Pol Roux! I have the book of his poems in English by Andrew Mangravite and another very rare one translated by Brian Merrikin Hill, and I plan to get yours too. The English speaking world needs to get to know the work of Saint Pol Roux, a very important, but negleted poet, and you might be the one who can help this happen! Thanks for reading my message and considering it.
I am so happy to have found this little book of your translations. I have found very little of his work in English and I have tried to encourage those studying French to translate his works. I have found myself someone who connects to his poetry, and thinks it urgent that he become better known. I am going right now to buy your chapbook and I will hunt for it on Amazon. You now have my contact information on both Facebook and my email. If you contact me refer to St Pol Roux and it will alert me that a kindred spirit is seeking me out.
Thank you for your kind words, Eli! I do hope you buy, and enjoy, my book. Perhaps if you do, you could do your bit to help publicize Saint Pol Roux by writing the book a review on Amazon? It’s not that I’m not serious about doing the whole book but it is a time-consuming project that is unlikely to make me any money so it may have to wait until I am either retired or rich!