Gabor G. Gyukics and Terri Carrion translate Zsuka Nagy

Two in the street

as a finale he threw a chair into the middle of the dive,
he wanted to throw two, but they held him down.

it was a cheesy, faceless dive, a Pepsi-ad color eclectic poverty,
at dawn blue and shit colored flowers bloom at the edge of the city.
of course, they were standing on their two legs pushing each other the way they played with their dump-trucks, ragdolls and pillow cases in their childhood, and later with the thrown out clothes of their lovers.

but now they are in the Villonesque loathsomeness, ready to steal and destroy.
at night they eat the moon, fried eggs they say, it’s enough for them.
fuck reality but mix the moon with hard liquor.
street smelling incense, mint cigarette that they bite, tear and rip
they cannot compare the stars, become uneasy, start scratching,
the stars are scratched out pimples on our bodies they say, and calm down a bit.

they sit in a box at Gajdos’, feeling cold already gobbled the moon up, need something solid.
they stand up swaying like trees in the wind, they’re bony, their skins hang on them like stretched t-shirts, yet it’s starry they say then drop, their skin turns to urine and vomit like gooey substance.

they have their own table in their dreams, they’re free to take.
their blouse and shirts are ironed, their jeans are clean, their shoes are shining
there is a roof above their heads, simple small rooms and everyone minds their own business, things only they know, aren’t drunk, clinking their tall glasses
because there is some kind of holiday or other good happening or just because.

two persons in the street, both easily transplantable, lie on a kind of asphalt rug
going wild like grown children and know that they are only similes and metaphors.
they get up, cut the throat of reality, get disguised,
walk in blue and shit colored eclectic poverty, in the gypsy row, and then they put all of it in writing.


dad is a shell
mom is a fuzzy heart root
when the rain comes, we drench together
when the sun shines we are together
in the light

sometimes I bury them in the woods
to save them from trouble
I call them to hold hands and
whisper into each other’s ears

dad and mom are whispering
earth is guarding them
we practice resurrection
they come out of the ground
wash their bodies
dress up and go to work

they call me Sunday saying
lunch is ready for Wednesday
they ask if I have anything to eat
then I invite them to the woods again
they say it’s awkward for them
but they will do it if I want to

Translators’ note:

Zsuka Nagy’s idiosyncrasy is apparent in her free verse, where form is determined by the dynamics of strong emotions, lightened by a whimsical rhyme here and there. Her poems stand out for their bravery and vocabulary, even in a contemporary environment with fewer taboos, and for their unflinching take on the great themes: love, family, illness, poverty, rural life, old age, and death. A major motif in her work is the attention given to people living on the periphery of the mainstream. Her poems are at once intense and gentle, sometimes coarse, mixing everyday speech with lyrical imagery. Pigment, her third and most recent book of poetry, was published in 2018.

Terri Carrion was conceived in Venezuela and born in New York to a Galician mother and Cuban father. Her work has appeared and disappeared in print and online. She is co-founder of the global grassroots movement 100 Thousand Poets for Change.


Gabor G Gyukics, a poet and translator from Budapest, is the author of eleven books of original poetry; six in Hungarian, two in English, one in Arabic, one in Bulgarian, one in Czech. He is the translator of eleven books including A Transparent Lion, selected poetry of Attila József, and Swimming in the Ground: Contemporary Hungarian Poetry (in English, both with co-translator Michael Castro) and an anthology of North American Indigenous poets translated into Hungarian under the title Medvefelhő a város felett.

Zsuka Nagy was born in 1977 in Nyíregyháza, Hungary and is a poet, writer, teacher, and the author of four collections of poetry. She lives and works as a teacher in Nyíregyháza. She likes poetic images just as she likes riding her bicycle which she calls Rozi. She is the recipient of several prizes.




Allison A. deFreese translates Verónica G. Arredondo

_ _ _
_ _ _
_ _ _


There are
Green ghost fires in the black rooms.

Tu Fu
(Translation of Tu Fu’s verse by Kenneth Rexroth.)


I learned to sing in the desert

To interpret those voices  

To transcribe the sound of hours
scratching between bones and teeth

I held the piano in my hands,
then put it away under my tongue
locked away in a little box

Childhood was pursuing me
a spiral staircase like a snail’s shell
a half-opened door
with jaws in its depths

a recurrent

yellow trembling

My eyes inhabit a desert without stars

There is a green breeze in the open black window
In the black window there are green wings
                                               in the black there is green
                                                       the lights of insomnia

When someone turns on the lights
in the green room there are black feathers


I descend to the bottom on a spiral staircase  

A rip in the belly

The trembling sets in
at the knees
            and thighs

My hand touches
the body with the gutted hollow

When it comes tonight, my body won’t be empty

It will come for me, and I will be breathless
the tide has taken away my breath


the typhoon is coming for me

                             Since when do puppets pray?

Mamá, and what is this thirst?

             what about this silence?

            : and your blue flowers
the violet of your lips?

Mamá, what if I open my eyes
                 in the middle of a dream?

Translator’s Note

Green Fires of the Spirits is “at once one book and many,” Verónica González Arredondo announces in the thin-as-a-damselfly-wing, half-paragraph long introduction to the book in which “[Sky]” first appeared in Spanish. Verónica’s poems, all referencing the weather or water and other elements, are occasionally reminiscent of the best of Octavio Paz, and the reader may find strains of Issa or Tu Fu, notes from a Victorian parlor, or motifs of Modernist imagists such as Ezra Pound. Yet the crisp and unflinching music of this poetry forges a new, and altogether original, score that is unique in world poetry. Through a series of short reflections, narrated in the voice of a young girl from the deserts of Northern Mexico, Verónica González Arredondo debuts an unmistakably beautiful and haunting style all her own. Her poems take me back to the original Grimms’ fairy tales, with all the grizzly bits intact, revealing a chaotic and inexplicable universe through the eyes of a child who sees all too clearly its beauty and horrors: “Childhood was pursuing me/a spiral staircase like a snail’s shell/a half-opened door/with jaws in its depths,” (“[Sky]”). Though the writing in Green Fires is often light, magical, and entrancing, this is also a world where teeth hide in flowers and jaws are waiting at the bottom of the stairs; where a cherry tree may produce both cheerful red fruit and ash as gray as the fog that transports us back to WWII, the Holocaust, or Hiroshima; an airy dream of dragonflies may end abruptly when the dreamer opens a bedroom door and finds herself perched at the edge of a precipice as “the abyss returns my scream.” For three years, I had wanted to translate poetry that addressed immigration from Central America and Mexico, while acknowledging the women and girls who disappear while making this journey. I found those poems here, in Verónica’s deserts that once were oceans, as she guides us through underworlds and the heavens while providing a voice for those who are often silenced.

Poet and translator Allison A. deFreese is based in the U.S. Pacific Northwest and coordinates literary translation workshops for the Oregon Society of Translators and Interpreters. She has previously lived in Mexico and South America. She holds a BA from Ottawa University, an MFA and MA from the University of Texas at Austin (James A. Michener Center for Writers), and an MA in Spanish Translation from the University of Texas at Brownsville (now UT Rio Grande Valley). She has several book-length literary translations forthcoming later this year, including works by María Negroni and Luis Chitarroni (Argentina). Her translation of Verónica González Arredondo’s book I Am Not That Body won the 2020 Pub House Press (Quebec) international chapbook manuscript competition and is forthcoming this June.

Verónica González Arredondo (Guanajuato, Mexico) holds a PhD in Arts from the Universidad de Guanajuato and a Master’s in Philosophy from the Universidad de Zacatecas. She has received several prestigious Latin American literary awards, including Mexico’s National Ramón López Velarde Prize in Poetry/Premio Nacional de Poesía “Ramón López Velarde,” for her book of poems Ese cuerpo no soy/I Am Not That Body (Universidad Autónoma de Zacatecas, 2015) as well as the Dolores Castro Prize in Poetry /Premio Dolores Castro en Poesía, an annual prize awarded to a woman writing exceptional and socially conscious work in Spanish, for her book Verde Fuegos de Espíritus/Green Fires of the Spirits (Ayuntamiento de Aguascalientes, 2014). Voracidad, grito y belleza animal/Voraciousness, Screams and Animal Beauty, a book of essays, was also published by Universidad Autónoma de Zacatecas in 2014. Verónica González Arredondo’s books of verse have previously been translated into, and published in, French and Portuguese. From 2017-2018 she held a FONCA fellowship for younger artists through the Fondo Nacional para la Culturas y las Artes/National Fund for Arts and Culture.               




Chen Du & Xisheng Chen translate Yan An

The lightning catcher

1. A Bare-Handed Lightning Catcher

Many friends are destined to leave
Many things are doomed to vanish
Just like we are bound to see dust and cinders
Just like cloud shadows and broad-leaved epiphyllums

Just like a bare-handed lightning catcher
Just like the grey bristles and manes of wolves
Running hither and thither on a moorland
Running hither and thither on the mountain ridges
In the bleak twilight or broad daylight
Just like some kind of hallucination that has flashed by
Just like stones, descending with a waterfall
That glitter-glister in the splashing white light of the falls
The bare-handed lightning catcher
Many trees have been knocked down by him
Many mountains have been overthrown by him
Many rivers have been held in his hands like handles
As if he were holding whips

The man who lashes us with a whip
Who thrashes trees, hills, and dales
Who slashes top-heavy hairy savages
Who catches lightning with bare hands
Is the man who is waiting for us
To catch our and the world’s
Ghost shades and silhouettes
As if we were hunting bears in shadows







2. The Man Digging a Well at the Seashore

The man digging a well at the seashore
Looks wan    and gloomy
He is familiar with the headland, dull seabirds, and even sea ghosts
Sometimes he lives with them in the mountains
Sometimes he lives alone on a reef
Sometimes he lives, when the fishing season is over,
On a tottering mast whence he can overlook the entire ocean

The ocean is like a sapphire blue wasteland
Surrounded by white spindrifts and mournful warbles of white seabirds
All the white birds are still soaring above the ocean
All the black birds are winging in the sky
The man digging a well at the seashore
Is like a gigantic spider    using a fishing net
To suspend himself from the teetering mast

Like a seabird whose wings have been broken by the ocean many times
The man digging a well at the seashore
Knows very well secrets of the ocean
His small well is so exquisite
So crystal clear    that all the people coming to watch the ocean want to drink from it
A fish conceiving for long but unable to spawn wants to drink from it
Even the entire ocean dying of thirst
Wants to drink from it



是个憔悴的人    阴郁的人

像一只巨大的蜘蛛    用渔网

如此清澈    所有前来看海的人要喝它


Translator’s Notes

Yan An’s poems are highly experimental, unconventional, and unique according to the standards and traditions of Chinese culture, considering their aesthetic value, contents, philosophical denotations and meanings. As a pioneer in modern westernized Chinese poetry, Yan An has completely transformed Chinese readers’ concepts and understanding of poetry through his unique views about the universe, life, society and people. His way of thinking is unusual and unconventional. His poems do not contain any of the Chinese elements traditionally and commonly depicted by other Chinese poets; instead, they can transcend the boundaries between nations and cultures, reaching for a wider audience across the world. In each of his poems, behind his boundless imagination, there lies a story and Yan An’s sentiments and understandings of life, people, society, and the universe.

His language is intense and abstract. Just like his other poems, these two poems are rich in literary devices, such as, similes, metaphors, personifications and parallelisms. These literary devices have well served their purpose in the Chinese versions. Nevertheless, in their English versions, some transcreation techniques have to be exploited to retain the same or similar effect. For example, in translating the second to the fourth lines of the third stanza of the poem “A Bare-Handed Lightning Catcher,” the phrase “The man” was omitted at the beginning of these three lines to make the translation more succinct, clear and rhythmic and to avoid repetition and drabness.

There were also other, different sorts of transcreation in the process. A new word was coined through reduplication: “glitter-glister,” in the eighth line of the second stanza. In the second line of the second stanza, we conjoined two similar linguistic elements, in this case: words in order to enrich the content of the translation: “bristles and manes.” To avoid repetition and boredom, some synonyms are used to translate the same Chinese words. For example, in the first three lines of the third stanza of the poem “A Bare-Handed Lightning Catcher”, the word “抽打” is translated into three synonyms: “lashes,” “thrashes,” and “slashes.”

In addition, we added some extra words or meaning to a few words in the target text or translated a simple word into a more complicated concept. It helps the lines of the same stanza have similar lengths. For example, the word “奔走” (literally: “running”) is translated to “Running hither and thither”. As a result, the line that contains this word has a similar length to the other lines in the same stanza and the target text is more vivid than a literal translation. Because the Chinese language emphasizes meaning (parataxis) while the English language emphasizes structure (hypotaxis), by adding extra meaning to some part of the target text, the transcreated text has also integrated with the source language and culture to some extent.

All in all, we have attempted to bring something new and foreign into English to enrich it, by helping English poets and readers unleash their creativity, imagination, inspiration, and by bridging or integrating American and Chinese way of thinking and culture. Also, we have endeavored to create some novel transcreation techniques to help with any future translation of Yan An’s poems.


Yan An is a most famous poet in contemporary China, author of fourteen poetry books including his most famous poetry book Arranging Boulders which has won him The Sixth Lu Xun Literary Prize, one of China’s top four literary prizes. He is the winner of various national awards and prizes. He is also the Vice President of Shaanxi Writers Association, the head and Executive Editor-in-Chief of the literary journal Yan River, one of the oldest and most famous literary journals in Northwestern China. He is a national committee member of the Poetry Committee of China Writers Association.


Chen Du has a Master’s Degree in Biophysics from Roswell Park Cancer Institute, the State University of New York at Buffalo and a Master’s Degree in Radio Physics from the Chinese Academy of Sciences. She revised more than eight chapters of the Chinese translation of the biography of Helen Snow, Helen Foster Snow – An American Woman in Revolutionary China. In the United States, her translations have appeared in Columbia Journal, Lunch Ticket, The Bare Life Review, and River River. She is also the author of the book Successful Personal Statements. Find her online at


Xisheng Chen is a translator and ESL linguist and educator. His educational background includes: BA and MA from Fudan University, Shanghai, China, and a Mandarin Healthcare Interpreter Certificate from City College of San Francisco, California. His working history includes: translator for Shanghai TV Station, lecturer at Jiangnan University in Wuxi, China, adjunct professor at Departments of English and Social Sciences, Trine University, Angola, Indiana, and high-tech translator for Futurewei Technologies, Inc. in Santa Clara, California.




Agnieszka Gabor da Silva translates Anna Adamowicz

peeling off

the hairless skin that isolates me from the world
is a few millimeters thick
(thicker on finger tips
thinner in elbow pits)
the only contact with the world I have is
through membranes of mucous (glass, opal)

through here you can come in
lay eggs
come out

a fruit fly is isolated from the universe
by a golden exoskeleton
complete with a pair of wings (opal, glass)

the fruit fly hit the space
pierced right through it
the fruit fly can roll its eyes inward
to see its own chromosome

I am in contact with the universe
through the red eyes of a fruit fly

Tumulus the mole builds a house underneath the cemetery in the town of Szklary Gorne

moving through the water with the shovels of his paws,
sliding through claylike layers with his missile-slender body,
patiently pushing soil out of the soil.
work results are beautiful and good: a moss-carpeted bedroom,
a pantry full of earthworms with slashed nerves.
time to dig a well, says Tumulus
and he drills down, more swiftly than a gannet, his rough fingers seeking humidity.
but instead he senses emptiness. a feeling alien to moles.
cold, bitterness, failure fill his nostrils. a hum,
impossible to mute, arises in his head.
carefully, he enters the musty coffin, crawls,
curls up into a ball under the ribbed vault.

crossing over

philosophy is a ponderous column polished over thousands of years
which always lacked a capital but soon
it shall be capped by

Laika, a soviet scientist and astronaut, the pride of the nation.
she has just reached Earth orbit (perigee of 211 km,
apogee of 1659 km) on board Sputnik 2. soon
she will share her reflections and the microphones fitted to the capsule
will capture every word she says.

first lap
cosmos abandoned basement
tastes of iron rod

second lap
stars rocks hurt my paws
can’t hear any others

third lap
home a hard capsule
cosmos streets of Moscow

fourth lap
my name is Kudryavka
I’m a soup made of dog

recitativo of a tapeworm stuck to Maria Callas’s intestine

for O.F

I can hear her sing
this is my body which I love and I don’t which I love and I don’t which I

I soak up the bitter night mantra
rough Greek words cut glass pane
I grow

when you’re up on stage
it’s not you they applaud
oh Violetta, Tosca, Norma, Aida
but the ribbon in your guts that
squeezes your waist from the inside
I made you into a slender fruit
from the tree of the knowledge of bel canto and brutta vita

my children are thriving in your flesh

systems. dissociation

the most beautiful organ is the brain
enveloped with meninges, covered with the cranium can,
fitting in its tracts stability, drive,
and identity, which you must rip off like a used
band-aid, uncover the wounds for the salt to corrode.
you’re all salt, my love, and you must
fall apart; out of your body Europe will
precipitate a golden residue, where
lead, silver, consciousness dance together

Ksenia Bolotnikova recalls Holodomor

in nineteen thirty-two, sir, there was nothing left.
no crop, no potatoes, no farm or domestic animals,
no wool, no sickles, no flails, no passports, no wagons,
no roads, no stars—we ate everything but the knife.

the spring was cold, windy and rainy. one day,
from the water collected in the hollow of my cheek a devil emerged
assuring me that once I eat my daughter,
I will throw up everything:
the crop, the potatoes, the animals, the wool, the sickles, the flails,
the passports, the wagons, the roads, the stars—
I will turn the whole world inside out like a pillowcase
and the famine will be over.
my daughter will come back, too, safe and sound, so no loss there.

the knife was left uneaten in fear that its blade would reveal
the shame hidden in-between the folds.
the hand, unstopped by the angel
(if an angel came down, sir, from the heavenly sky to Sofievka
we would’ve eaten him inevitably, not even caring for
plucking his wings), a hand, twenty-seven
tiny fragile bones shining through the skin like a firefly,
the hand slit the throat.

go ahead and tell them, please,
to give me some bishop’s wort rootstalk.
for all these years I have been trying to throw up,
save Ukraine


Translator’s note:

The poems by Anna Adamowicz talk about the kingdom of Animalia but, surprisingly, it is not the human species that constitutes the main focus of her work. Although she does describe in detail a series of biological systems found in the human body, she dedicates a lot of attention to the world of insects, arthropods, reptiles, worms and, finally, mammals, where we can observe things from their perspective. In the background there is Europe, sometimes as a place or an organism.

Apart from allowing us to witness the world from such a distinct position, Adamowicz’s poems play another important role: they give voice to the voiceless. In this way, we are able to observe Tumulus the mole building a house or accompany Laika the dog in her short and tragic journey into space.

Moreover, Adamowicz also gives voice to those who never had a chance to speak up. One of her poems talks about Ksenia Bolotnikova, a young Ukrainian woman who lived during the man-made famine in Soviet Ukraine in the 1930s and who murdered her own daughter with the intention to feed her son and herself. Ksenia’s powerful confession enwrapped in Adamowicz’s poem is an attempt to describe the horrors of starvation without any traces of judgement because—who would dare to do that?

The biological aspect of Adamowicz’s texts was a meaningful lesson in how to translate a poem without making it sound like an encyclopedia entry. While the author incorporates biology into verse in the most harmonious way possible, as a translator, I often found it challenging to recreate the novelty of her perception as well as her carefully crafted poetic language.

Another difficulty I encountered is related to the choice of poems to submit. Adamowicz covers a wide array of themes in her volume by touching upon biological, environmental, historical, social, and cultural aspects of the world. On the one hand, I wanted to give the reader a sample of each of these factors; on the other hand, I could not help but translate the poems which affected me personally, hoping that they will likewise appeal to the reader.


Aga Gabor da Silva graduated from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where she studied Lusophone Literatures and Cultures. Aga also holds a Master of Arts in English from Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, Poland. Her first translation from Polish into English—two poems “Tights” and “Buttons” written by Bronka Nowicka—was published in the Winter/Spring 2019 issue of Lunch Ticket. Aga currently lives in sunny New Mexico with her family. When she’s not busy chasing after her three-year old, she translates literature.


Anna Adamowicz was born in 1993 in Lubin, in south-western Poland. She is a poet and a laboratory diagnostician. Her first volume of poetry, Wątpia (Doubt), published in 2016 by Kwadratura, was nominated for the Gdynia Literary Award and won third place in the “Browar za debiut” (Beer for Debut) poll. Her second collection of poetry, Animalia, was published in January of 2019 by Biuro Literackie, and a few poems from the volume have been translated into Hungarian, Slovenian, and English. You can follow Anna Adamowicz on Facebook.




Calvin Olsen and Antonio Ladeira translate João Luís Barreto Guimarães

The painter of Altamira

painter of Altamira (in the darkness of the cave) knows
the shadows he sees on the wall
are real. For him the real and apparent
are indistinct
for he knows the shadows undulating on the wall
are (in fact) bison
passing in front of the cave. Ten thousand years
will have to pass twice
before another bearded man can affirm
something different and in another cave
(by the light of another light) rethink
from the start. But for now they are shadows
(with the profiles of bison) that
the painter of Altamira copies all over the cave –
asking the stone gods that they
may reproduce
so there’s never a shortage of shadows (and
for that matter bison) to hunt
and eat.

O pintor de Altamira

pintor de Altamira (na escuridão da caverna) sabe
que as sombras que vê na parede
são reais. Para si são indistintos o
real e o aparente
porque sabe que as sombras que cintilam na parede são
(de facto) de bisontes
que passam defronte à caverna. Será preciso que
passem duas vezes
dez mil anos para que outro homem de barba afirme
coisa diferente e numa outra caverna
(à luz de uma outra luz) pense
do início. Mas por agora são sombras
(com o recorte de bisontes) que o
pintor de Altamira copia por toda a caverna –
pedindo aos deuses de pedra que elas
se multipliquem
para que nunca faltem sombras (e já
agora bisontes) para caçar
e comer.

The motion of the world

Through the church door I’d hear people’s prayers recited
like someone’s times tables. I wandered the world and
it was funny) the more I wandered the more
I had it right (life
itself seemed like it wanted to hold
onto me). In a world gone belly up
bats are the wise ones –
I came back from the world and never admired
the return
(the color of the sea was the same
the light in the sky was the same
envy was exactly the same). Seen top 
to bottom
each illusion is small –
through the school window I’d hear times tables recited
like someone’s prayers.

Movimento do mundo

Pela porta da igreja ouvia dizer orações
como quem diz tabuadas. Eu errava pelo mundo e
era engraçado) quanto mais errava mais
estava certo (a
própria vida parecia que me queria
preso a si). Num mundo de pernas para o ar
os sábios são os morcegos –
eu regressava do mundo e nunca estranhava
o regresso
(a cor do mar era a mesma
a luz do céu era a mesma
a inveja era a mesma). Vista de cima
para baixo
toda a ilusão é pequena –
pela janela da escola ouvia dizer tabuadas como
quem diz orações.

Wild apples

More than the first verse I am unsettled
by this: who provides
the second one? I scan the world with my eyelids
(opening and closing my eyes)
to select is to exclude
to exclude is to understand
to understand is to preserve. Each poem written is
an opportunity
like touching someone who without warning
shocks you
(a fish bone in your throat) nails
scratching on a black board. Creating poems is like
wild apples
(you’re expecting sweetness but what you taste is
acidity). Inside the poem:
(around them: white space)
silence put to work.

Maçãs selvagens

Mais do que o primeiro verso inquieta-me
o seguinte: o segundo
quem o dá? Escolho o mundo com as pálpebras
(abrindo e fechando os olhos)
escolher é excluir
excluir é entender
entender é preservar. Cada poema escrito é
uma oportunidade
como alguém em quem se toca e sem que se conte
dá choque
(uma espinha na garganta) a unha
num quadro de ardósia. Fazer poemas é como ir
maçãs selvagens
(vais à espera de doçura mas o provas é
a acidez). Dentro do poema:
(em redor: espaço branco)
silêncio a trabalhar.

Translators’ note:

Professionally, João is a doctor of plastic and reconstructive surgery, and he’s a perfect addition to the long line of physician-poets. His poetry has been published in anthologies and literary magazines in Portugal, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Dominican Republic, France, Germany, Holland, Italy, Macedonia, Mexico, Montenegro, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States (and probably a few more I’m not remembering). He and I were introduced by my mentor, Robert Pinsky, who knew of my ongoing work translating the collected works of the late Alberto de Lacerda. I immediately loved João’s voice: it is inclusive without being pedestrian, and his often-tongue-in-cheek tone is very engaging. He’s also incredibly adept at packing ideas and emotion into a concise poem (almost nothing he writes goes beyond a single page), and the first-person narration puts the reader right in the middle of the action.

These three poems come from Nomad, João’s tenth book, which attests to his popularity and success in his home country of Portugal and abroad. He gave me the opportunity to work alongside Antonio Ladeira to translate the collection, which is an honor in and of itself. We are thrilled for Anomaly to be the first journal to publish part of our work—there is plenty more where this came from.

– Calvin Olsen

Antonio Ladeira was born in Portugal in 1969. He currently lives in Lubbock, Texas, where he is an Associate Professor of Portuguese and Spanish at Texas Tech University. He holds a Licenciatura degree in Portuguese Studies from Nova University in Lisbon, and a PhD in Hispanic Languages and Literatures from the University of California in Santa Barbara. He has published five volumes of his own poetry in Portugal and two books of short stories in Portugal, Brazil and Colombia. He is also a lyricist for Jazz singer Stacey Kent.

Calvin Olsen’s poetry and translations have appeared or are forthcoming in AGNI, Asymptote, The Comstock Review, Ezra Translation, The London Magazine, and The National Poetry Review, among others. A former Robert Pinsky Global Fellow and recent Pushcart Prize nominee, Calvin now lives in North Carolina, where he is a doctoral student in Communication, Rhetoric, & Digital Media and the poetry editor at The Carolina Quarterly. More of his work can be found at his website (

João Luís Barreto Guimarães was born in Porto, Portugal, where he graduated in medicine. He is a breast reconstructive plastic surgeon and author of ten poetry books, the most recent of which are Mediterrâneo (Mediterranean, 2016), winner of Portugal’s António Ramos Rosa Award for Poetry; Nómada (Nomad, 2018), which was voted a Book of the Year by Livraria Bertrand (the oldest bookstore in the world); and O Tempo Avança por Sílabas (Time Advances by Syllables, 2019). He is also a chronicler and a translator, mainly for his blog Poesia & Lda.