Selected Translations by W.S. Merwin

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Synopsis

"Mr. Merwin is an undisputed master."—The New York Times

"Merwin writes that the act of translation is 'plainly impossible and nevertheless indispensable.' We can be grateful that he feels compelled to master the impossible. . . . And that gift alone is priceless."—The Wichita Eagle

Selected Translations is the lifework from one of America's greatest poets and translators. Dedicated to the art of translation since his undergraduate years at Princeton, Poet Laureate W.S. Merwin achieved an unmatched oeuvre of translated poems from every corner of the earth, from dozens of languages. This massive achievement is an essential volume for every library, public and private.

From "In Praise of Darkness":
Translated from the Spanish of Jorge Luis Borges

Old age (as others refer to it)
can be the season of our good fortune.
The animal has died, all but the dying.
What remains is the man and his spirit.
I live among vague luminous shapes
that have not yet become darkness . . .

W.S. Merwin was US Poet Laureate from 2010–2011. He won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry twice, most recently for The Shadow of Sirius (Copper Canyon Press, 2009), and the National Book Award for Migration: New and Selected Poems (Copper Canyon Press, 2005). Author and translator of over fifty books, Merwin lives in Hawaii and France.

 

About W.S. Merwin

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W.S. Merwin: W.S. Merwin, U.S. Poet Laureate from 2010-11, won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry twice, most recently for The Shadow of Sirius (Copper Canyon, 2009), and the National Book Award for Migration: New and Selected Poems (Copper Canyon, 2005). Author and translator of over fifty books, Mr. Merwin lives in Hawaii and France.
 
Published June 1, 1968 by Macmillan Pub Co. 176 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

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These poems cover twenty years of translations from French, Spanish, Latin, Russian and Asian languages, Starting with the work of an Egyptian of the 20th century B.C., the book progresses to works by outspoken contemporary Soviet poets.

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Publishers Weekly

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Were Merwin not one of America’s most admired poets (his honors include two Pulitzers and a term as U.S. poet laureate) he would still be as famous as translators get: for more than 50 years and for more than 50 volumes, Merwin has rendered, sensitively and carefully, canonical poets such as Ma...

Jul 16 2012 | Read Full Review of Selected Translations

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