I love it how TLS comes up with these things I never heard of.
This one, from last week’s issue, is about a poet who kicked against the goad from start to finish. Stubborn bloke who I hope saw God in all things.
In translating these poems, Gallas and Kurt Gänzl have presented a reliquary of gems that glint and glare and burn, successfully evoking the energy of Borel’s verse. Produced through a two-step process of translating and “repoeming”, the book is a credit to Gallas’s poetic instinct, which colours and sculpts Gänzl’s initial translations. These translations may even rival the original French versions in verve and flourish. Perhaps Petrus Borel, who died in anonymity of heatstroke in Algeria, will finally have a more fortuitous moment in the sun.
Sarah-Jean Zubair is a postgraduate student in English Literature at University College London. She holds an MA in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University, New York
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