« De l’autre côté du langage » (W.S. Graham, lecture de Jean-Pierre Longre)

William Sydney Graham by Michael Seward Snow, late 1950s

William Sydney Graham by Michael Seward Snow, late 1950s

“L’ouverture et l’élargissement du travail poétique sont d’ailleurs revendiqués par Graham lui-même, dans ses « Notes sur une poésie de la libération » ici reproduites. Pour lui, « le poème est plus que l’intention du poète ». « Pour chaque individu il prend une vigueur nouvelle. C’est le lecteur qui le ramène à la vie et il participe à la transformation du lecteur ».

Fort de ces considérations, et de la présentation faite par Michael Snow (ami du poète, décédé trop tôt pour voir cette parution), le lecteur peut pénétrer dans le monde de W. S. Graham, se glisser peut-être « entre moi et cet environnement qui m’envahit de toute part », et composer avec l’apparente obscurité (que le titre du recueil ne dément pas) de certains textes, qui conduisent « de l’autre côté / Du langage ». Il s’agit d’être à l’écoute (« Je laisse ceci à ton oreille pour quand tu t’éveilleras »), de savoir être « réceptif »” (Jean-Pierre Longre)

Pour lire l’article



Poèmes choisis
traduit de l’anglais par Anne-Sylvie Homassel & Blandine Longre
Introduction de Michael Snow / Postface de Paul Stubbs, recueil bilingue

Black Herald Press, Septembre 2013

174 pages – 14 € / £ 12 / $18 / ISBN  978-2-919582-07-5

commander l’ouvrage / order the book

Anthony Vivis (1943-2013)

Anthony Vivis

Anthony Vivis

Obituary of Anthony Vivis (1943-2013) in The Guardian.

“Anthony Vivis, who has died suddenly aged 70, was a renowned translator of postwar German plays that habitually documented mythical misery in the urban jungle while relating to the ingrained tradition of Brecht, Georg Büchner, Gerhart Hauptmann and Schiller.”


Anthony co-translated (with Will Stone) poems by August Stramm, published in the 3rd issue of The Black Herald.


“In memory of Anthony Vivis (1943-2013) theatrical writer, translator of German literature, friend and thoroughly decent man, who recently left us. The contribution Anthony made to English culture through forty years of translating German drama cannot be underestimated. His plays by writers such as Jelinek, Kroetz, Fassbinder and Brecht were performed in London’s West End and elsewhere, he worked for the BBC and the Royal Shakespeare Company and was a fellow of Clare College Cambridge. Anthony was one of the ‘old guard’ in German studies in and around UEA and was a long standing friend of both WG Sebald and Michael Hamburger. In a way in his more retiring capacity, he constituted the third part of this triumvirate who did so much for the reception of German letters in the UK. He will be sorely missed.” (Will Stone)

Darkscapes – Anne-Sylvie Salzman



by Anne-Sylvie Salzman
Translated by William Charlton
Tartarus Press, 2013

“Narrative and story can lead us to visions of that which is impossible — that which can drive us mad, or make us feel as if we already are mad. The horror story in particular offers the possibility of a temporary release from sanity and safety. The fifteen stories in ‘Darkscapes‘ by Anne-Sylvie Salzman, translated from the French by William Charlton, offer a literary taste of madness, an intense inversion of reason that is powerful, sometimes unknowable, and almost always unforgettable. Salzman is the perfect 21st-century bride for Edgar Allen Poe. ” (Rick Kleffel)
Anne-Sylvie Salzman (aka Anne-Sylvie Homassel) is a Paris-based writer and translator. She co-directs Le Visage vert, a literary magazine and small press devoted to supernatural fiction. She is the author of Sommeil (José Corti), Au bord d’un lent fleuve noir (Joëlle Losfeld) and Lamont (Le Visage vert). Amongst other novels and collections, she translated Max Beerbohm’s Seven Men, Lord Dunsany’s The Sword of Welleran, Ernest Bramah’s Max Carrados and Arthur Machen’s Three Impostors—and some of W.S. Graham’s poetry, feats she is inanely proud of. She is currently working on a science-fiction novel.

Paul Stubbs reviews ‘Rilke in Paris’


Maurice Betz (Translated from the French by Will Stone, Hesperus Press, 2012)



“Rilke, on earth, lived a life akin to a pre-natal being, one whose sensations in existence remained as homogenous and pure as his time spent in the womb. He rejected birth and death as a consequence for existence, determining that this paradox was the reason behind which he would discover the absolute, i.e. through his own modifications of reality. Jean-Paul Sartre writing of Kierkegaard said ‘The beginning of the thinker’s existence is analogous to a birth. This is not a rejection but a displacement of the beginning. Before birth there was non-being; then comes the leap…’. Every morning in Paris, amid the ash-heaps of dreams, Rilke awoke to the metaphysical and limbless stump of his own still absent body. He saw the world as if between the parenthesis of each new death, whether one of his own or that of another human being.” (Paul Stubbs)

read the review


‘The Eternal Procession’ – Paul Stubbs reviews Yves Bonnefoy’s ‘The Arrière-pays’

The Arrière-pays
Yves Bonnefoy

Translated by Stephen Romer – Seagull Books, 2012

‘Yves Bonnefoy is first an abstract form, then a poet. Therefore a work such as The Arrièrepays is but a shadow giving notice of his shapes still to locate a sundial. He is what Jean-Paul Sartre said of  Baudelaire, that he had the posture of ‘a leaning man’ (‘d’un homme penché’); one acutely adrift of the comet of his own flesh and who, burning up in the drag of his own sentences, holds within his fist only the shredded remains of each exploded space. When Rimbaud wrote ‘To every being, several other lives seemed to me to be due’ he opened up in knowledge and in poetry the first true terror-pores of gnosis, allowing a poet like Bonnefoy to access his own unpurged mind, to conceive of what Yeats revealed in Vision—‘all things dying each other’s life, living each other’s death’. To witness the mirage of this elsewhere in time and space (this place which Bonnefoy names ‘the arrière-pays’ i.e. an imaginary hinterland born of what he calls the ‘unknown feeling’), this poet has first to return to Eden, to locate the one tree in which the fruit is still flesh, and whose bark, if peeled back, reveals only his own still unused bone.’
Paul Stubbs

To read the review


Forthcoming / à paraître

The Black Herald

Literary magazine – Revue de littérature
Issue #3 – September 2012 – Septembre 2012
185 pages – 15€ / £13 / $19 – ISBN 978-2-919582-04-4

Poetry, short fiction, prose, essays, translations.
Poésie, fiction courte, prose, essais, traductions.

With / avec W.S Graham, Gregory Corso, Andrew Fentham, Louis Calaferte, Iain Britton, Jos Roy, Tristan Corbière, Michael Lee Rattigan, Clayton Eshleman, Denis Buican, John Taylor, César Vallejo, Anne-Sylvie Homassel, Cécile Lombard, Gary J. Shipley, Rosemary Lloyd, Bernard Bourrit, Mylène Catel, Nicolas Cavaillès, Ernest Delahaye, Sébastien Doubinsky, Gerburg Garmann, Michel Gerbal, Allan Graubard, Sadie Hoagland, James Joyce, João Melo, Andrew O’Donnell, Kirby Olson, Devin Horan, Dominique Quélen, Nathalie Riera, Paul B. Roth, Alexandra Sashe, Will Stone, Anthony Seidman, Ingrid Soren, August Stramm, Pierre Troullier, Romain Verger, Anthony Vivis, Elisabeth Willenz, Mark Wilson, Paul Stubbs, Blandine Longre et des essais sur / and essays about Charles Baudelaire, Francis Bacon. ImagesÁgnes Cserháti, Olivier Longre, Will Stone, Devin Horan. Design: Sandrine Duvillier.

The Black Herald 3

The Black Herald is edited by Paul Stubbs and Blandine Longre

Comité de Rédaction : Paul Stubbs et Blandine Longre


The Arrière-pays, Yves Bonnefoy / Stephen Romer

The Arrière-pays
Yves Bonnefoy

Translated by Stephen Romer – Seagull Books, 2012

Since the publication of his first book in 1953, Yves Bonnefoy has become one of the most important French poets of the postwar years. At last, we have the long-awaited English translation of Yves Bonnefoy’s celebrated work, L’Arrière-pays, which takes us to the heart of his creative process and to the very core of his poetic spirit.
Enriched by a new preface by the poet, this volume also includes three recent essays in which he returns to his original account of an ethical and aesthetic haunting, one that recounts the struggle between our instinct to idealize—what he deems our eternal Platonism—and the equally strong need to combat this and to be reconciled with our nature as finite beings, made of flesh and blood, in the world of the here and now.



about Stephen Romer



Rilke in Paris

Rilke in Paris
by Maurice Betz, translated from the French by Will Stone, Hesperus Press, 2012

In the summer of 1902, a young unknown German-language poet named Rainer Maria Rilke, arrived in Paris with the intention of writing a monograph on the famous sculptor Auguste Rodin. From then on, Paris proved both a reliable base and an irresistible source of inspiration for Rilke. He was by turns arrested, appalled, tormented and inspired by the raw reality of the Parisian street, and the life he witnessed there gradually entered his writings, prefigured by prodigious letters and notes. These formed the basis of his prose masterpiece The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge, published in 1910. Maurice Betz was Rilke’s foremost translator into French and knew the poet personally. In 1941 he published an insightful essay around Rilke’s artistic relationship with Paris, concentrating on the fascinating and difficult evolution of The Notebooks. Already translated into other European languages, Rilke in Paris is now available in English translation for the first time.



À propos d’un thug – Tabish Khair

à paraître en avril aux Editions du Sonneur

À propos d’un thug
un roman de Tabish Khair
traduit de l’anglais (Inde) par Blandine Longre
(avec le concours du CNL)
(The Thing about ThugsHarper Collins 2010)

THUGS : secte active en Inde du XIIIe au XIXe siècle, dont les membres pratiquaient le vol et le meurtre par strangulation en l’honneur de la déesse Kali. Amir Ali, l’un d’eux, a quitté l’Inde pour accompagner le capitaine William Meadows dans la grisaille du Londres victorien. Ce dernier a en effet pour projet d’écrire un ouvrage sur cette confrérie meurtrière. Dans le même temps, lord Batterstone, un célèbre phrénologue qui cherche à prouver les différences séparant les hommes et les races, charge un certain John May de lui trouver des crânes et de les lui apprêter. La quête de John May le pousse peu à peu à commettre des crimes abominables qui provoquent sensation et terreur dans tout Londres. Bientôt, les soupçons se portent sur Amir Ali – car qui d’autre qu’un thug, même repenti, aurait pu commettre de tels meurtres ?

Le roman a été retenu dans les dernières sélections des prix suivants :

Man Asian Literary Prize 2011
DSC Prize for South Asian Literature, 2012
Hindu Best Fiction Prize, 2010

du même auteur

Apaiser la Poussière
(Editions du Sonneur, 2010, traduit de l’anglais par B. Longre)

voir aussi



Particles of truth – Paul Stubbs reviews Jacques Dupin’s ‘Of Flies & Monkeys’

This book comprises three collections: De singes et de mouches (Of Flies and Monkeys, 2001), Les Mères (Mothers, 2001) and Coudrier (Hazel Tree, 2006), all of which, in truth, are fused of the same semantic world-surge, image-fusion, language-mesh. The poetry of Dupin, at its most intense and vaulted pressure of ink and blood, continually uproots us, gnawing at the heart, until we experience them: the sudden salmon upsurge of selves, his teeming and punctuated mind-flows, the reversed resurrections (his flesh zipped up and then unzipped to reveal exposed syntactical bone); amid a carnival concentration and concise pictograms of poetical sense, we feel at once the jolt and the jarring of the pulley-system of his sentences, those which Rimbaud envisioned for us all when he wrote that poetry would one day be “thought latching onto thought and pulling.Paul Stubbs

To read the review


Philippe Jaccottet & Pierre Albert-Jourdan

Two books introduced and translated from The French by John Taylor, published by Chelsea Editions

And, Nonetheless: Selected Prose and Poetry 1990—2009, Philippe Jaccottet

The Straw Sandals, Selected Prose and Poetry, Pierre-Albert Jourdan

Of Flies and Monkeys / De singes et de mouches

Of Flies and Monkeys, Jacques Dupin

introduced & translated from the French by John Taylor

Bitter Oleander Press, 2011.

In the field of contemporary French poetry, Jacques Dupin (b. 1927) is a leading figure in a remarkable generation that also includes Yves Bonnefoy, Philippe Jaccottet, and André du Bouchet. In comparison to the aforementioned poets, however, Dupin’s work has been little available in English. A single volume, Selected Poems (Wake Forest University Press, 1992), translated by Paul Auster, Stephen Romer, and David Shapiro, collects early work, but none of the poets recent verse has appeared in English-speaking countries.

This book rights this situation. Gathering Dupin’s important recent volume, Coudrier (Hazel Tree), as well as two earlier volumes, De singes et de mouches (Of Flies and Monkeys) and Les Mères (The Mothers), this new translation forms a stimulating collective introduction to the poet’s writing. As the critic Jean-Pierre Richard has pointed out, “the territory of words, sensations, and images that is invented through Dupin’s poems . . . belongs to no other poet today.” His stark poetry brings forth opposites, fosters paradoxes, suggests potential narratives that are left unrecounted, and could perhaps be called “cubist” in its juxtaposition of fragments and in its rejection of natural or logical transitions. Not least, his writing is humorous, especially in its wry quips, ironic transformations of well-worn expressions, or playful imagery.

(source : http://www.bitteroleander.com/books.html)

John Taylor is the author of the three-volume Paths to Contemporary French Literature and Into the Heart of European Poetry — all published by Transaction. A prose writer and poet, his latest book is The Apocalypse Tapestries (Xenos Books, 2004). He has received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Sonia Raiziss Charitable Foundation to translate Georges Perros and Louis Calaferte. Other authors he has recently translated include Pierre-Albert Jourdan, Philippe Jaccottet, Laurence Werner David, and several modern Greek writers. He lives in France.

About Jacques Dupin’s poetic language (by John Taylor)


Particles of Truth (a review by Paul Stubbs)


Plusieurs articles en français


une plaie d’infini

Un poème de Jos Roy, traduit en anglais, en complément du Black Herald 2, est en ligne.
A poem by French poet Jos Roy (original version & translation) can be read online.


Le blog de Jos Roy http://belarbeltza.blogspot.com/

Ce qu’est le Black Herald (#1) par le Visage Vert

Merci au Visage Vert (revue et éditeur) pour la présentation ci-dessous.
Il y a bien longtemps, nous semble-t-il, qu’une revue (et une maison d’édition) ne s’était pas posée, comme le fait le Black Herald Magazine, entre les langues, au plus près du mystère de leur origine. Ce que Paul Stubbs dans son éditorial explique ainsi : “Par la traduction, par la juxtaposition linguistique et le système d’échos entre les textes (même lorsqu’ils sont écrits en des langues que nous ne comprendrons jamais), l’esprit reconquiert sa connaissance première du langage, celle qui était sienne avant que les nations et les cultures ne nous hypnotisent au point de créer en nous des divisions et des classements inconscients qui influencent notre lecture avant même qu’elle ait commencé…” Une ambition qu’illustre un sommaire passionnant, mêlant auteurs contemporains traduits ou non, qu’ils soient poètes (Tabish Khair, Philippe Rahmy, Andrew O’Donnell, Valeria Melchioretto, Onno Kosters pour n’en citer que certains) ou prosateurs (Claro et sa traduction par Brian Evenson, Romain Verger, Sébastien Doubinsky dont on pourra découvrir la version américaine de sa Mort de Billy the Kid, paru naguère en français dans le Quarterly de Zanzibar) et auteurs plus anciens : Rodenbach, Verhaeren et Trakl traduits en anglais par Will Stone, une lettre inédite de Cioran traduite en français par Nicolas Cavaillès. Aux commandes de ce navire de pirates, Paul Stubbs et Blandine Longre, dont on avait déjà loué ici la sauvage poésie d’expression anglaise. Tous deux ont eu l’audace d’offrir à leurs contributeurs cette étrange arène où la langue, par le système d’échos qu’ils ont construit, ne peut être que remise en cause. Lecture jamais confortable, jamais contentée, donc, que celle du Black Herald Magazine, où chaque page, chaque texte, dans sa version originale et / ou dans sa traduction est source d’inquiétude. On attend avec une impatience certaine la deuxième livraison (automne 2011, nous dit-on) de ce super-héraut.

Apaiser la poussière

Apaiser la poussière de Tabish Khair
Traduit de l’anglais (Inde) par Blandine Longre • Inédit en français
Ouvrage traduit avec le concours du CNL
16 € • 122 x 192 • 224 pages •  ISBN 978-2-916136-29-5
Les Éditions du Sonneur, paru le 15 octobre 2010



The Fiend

The Fiend is edited by Andrew O’Donnell, and is a journal whose main emphasis is on poetry and translation. It was conceived in 2008 as an avenue for new talented writers to find their feet, become more acknowledged, or to find new audiences.

It accepts submissions of original poetry or translations from any corner of the globe, as well as critical prose, visual art of all kinds, philosophy, journalism with an international emphasis, plus essays and articles on a large number of themes relating to the politics of being alive, creative and open-minded in the 21st century.


The reweaving of time, Bei Dao’s poetry

by Paul Stubbs 

The Rose of Time: New and Selected Poems by Bei Dao
Edited by Eliot Weinberger, Translated by Yanbing Chen, David Hinton, Chen Maiping,
Iona Ma-Cheong, Bonnie S. McDougall and Eliot Weinberger
New Directions, 2010, $16.95 (288pp)

Just as Hölderlin through his writings wanted to make ‘disappear’ the ‘divisions in which we think and exist’, so too in the poetry of Bei Dao we experience consciousness again as a hypothesis; a new world problem to solve through the regeneration of language. From poem to poem a battle is fought between image and word upon the coterminous continents of his imagination as, like a poetical glass-blower, Bei Dao breathes new eternal shapes into words. To Western twenty-first-century eyes, his poems may appear born of the American ‘Imagist’ or ‘Objectivist’ schools, but they are in fact new concentrated structures of his own Chinese language—elliptical and oneiric images turning over the lathe of the planet. This selection by New Directions brings together, for the first time, five previous collections translated into English, beginning with The August Sleepwalker, in which we encounter the early work, much of which initially appeared in the influential underground journal that Bei Dao co-founded in 1978, Today (orJintian). The journal was banned after two years, but not before his name, and poetry, had been spread widely.

read more 

Boston translation

An ongoing conversation of news in and about literary translation, held among the editors, contributors, and readers of Pusteblume, a journal of and on translation published by The Pen & Anvil Press with the support of the Department of Modern Languages and Comparative Literature at Boston University.



“Wordaccretion, volcanic,
drowned out by searoar.”

(Translated from the German with an Introduction by Pierre Joris)

Journeys by Stefan Zweig

Journeys by Stefan Zweig
(translated by Will Stone, Hesperus Press, october 2010)

The first English translation of Zweig’s writings on his travels in Europe. Representing a lifetime’s observations, this collection can be dipped into or savoured at length, and paints a rich and sensitive picture of Europe before the Second World War. For the insatiably curious Zweig, travel was both a necessary cultural education and a personal balm for the depression he experienced when rooted in one place for too long. He spent much of his life weaving between the countries of Central Europe, visiting authors and friends, exploring the continent in the heyday of international rail travel.

To know more & buy the book

Flandres Hollande

les Flandres et les Pays-Bas à travers leurs écrivains

A travers ses travaux, Daniel Cunin, traducteur littéraire, évoque différents écrivains d’expression néerlandaise (du Moyen Âge à nos jours) ainsi que des écrivains d’expression française dans leur fréquentation des cultures flamande et hollandaise (ou tout simplement en raison de la beauté de leur œuvre). 

A lire entre autres, un post à propos du poème The Unseen de Sarah Teasdale et de ses nombreuses traductions / adaptations / transpositions…


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