Si no te hubieras ido (2014)

Jack Ross, ed.: Poetry NZ Yearbook 1 [Issue #49] (October 2014)

Books and Magazines in brief:

Rogelio Guedea. Si no te hubieras ido / If only you hadn’t gone. With translations by Roger Hickin. Introduction by Vincent O’Sullivan. ISBN 978-0-473-28658-3. Lyttelton: Cold Hub Press, 2014.

Rogelio Guedea: Si no te hubieras ido (2014)

Mexican poet Rogelio Guedea has been in New Zealand, teaching Spanish at the University of Otago, for a number of years now. It’s pleasant to think of him as an alternative to the somewhat monotonously monoglot world of contemporary Kiwi poetry. His translator (and publisher) Roger Hickin’s decision to present his poetry in dual-text, Spanish on the left, English on the right, is a particularly welcome one for those of us who can make some fist at understanding the originals, but are grateful for a bit of help with the tougher bits.
It’s true, my coffee has no taste without you.
I added another spoon of sugar thinking that might fix it
to no effect / yet another, it was just as bitter.
clearly sugar was not the issue [p.31]

There’s an agreeable lack of pretentiousness about Guedea’s work, a matter-of-fact colloquial ease which covers the adroitness with which he marshals his wares: some of the music may be more apparent on the left side than the right, but then that’s all the more incentive for all of us to have another try at escape from the prisonhouse of the English language.


Poetry New Zealand Yearbook 1 [Issue #49]. ISSN 0114-5770 (2014): 230.

[221 wds]

Poetry NZ Yearbook 1 (2014)

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