Lost and Found In Translation: Erín Moure and Multilingual Poetry

Posted by 
Helen Polychronakos

Room Magazine will feature Montreal-based poet, editor, and translator Erín Moure as our commissioned writer for issue 38.1, In Translation, edited by Rachel Thompson and due out March 2015.

About Moure 

Erin Moure

A prolific writer of 17 poetry collections, Moure has been nominated for five Governor General's Awards, and won the GG in 1988 for Furious. Her most recent collection, The Unmemntioable (House of Anansi, 2012) was short-listed for the Kobzar Literary Award and the Re-Lit Award.

Originally from Alberta but currently living in Montreal, Moure has translated 12 books of poetry, including (with Robert Masjzels) Notebooks of Roses and Civilization by Quebecois poet Nicole Brossard.  She has also translated poetry originally written in Galician, Spanish and Portuguese.

A multi-lingual consciousness permeates Moure's own poetry. O Resplandor (House of Anansi, 2010), a collection ostensibly written in English, includes snippets of Romanian, Portuguese, a Galician dialect from Ukraine, and Japanese kanji characters. Moure also plays with the idea of heteronyms, or poetic personae: the two sections of this book are entitled “The Nichita Stănescu Translations by Elisa Sampedrín” and “The Paul Celan Translations by Erín Moure”.  

Can't wait till next year to see Moure amongst Room's pages? Listen to her reading from O Resplandor, followed by an interview for PennSound at the University of Pennsylvania. Moure talks to Charles Bernstein about whether poetry is lost or found in translation, how performance and voice embody poetry, how politics, history, and identity affect the writing, reading, and translation of verse, and why one language is not enough.

Call for Submissions 

Does your own work delve into the theme of translation? Submit to our In Translation issue by July 31.

Biographical information on Moure taken from http://www.uleth.ca/finearts/departments/art/events/2014/01/art-now-erin-moure-speaks-january-29th-2014-noon-recital-hall

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