About This Blog
Welcome to my little corner of the internet. This is a blog devoted almost exclusively to poetry in translation. Most posts take the form of a translation of a single poem and contain an attempt to translate the original as poetry. These translations (of which a table of contents can be found under the My Translations tab in the menu bar above) are meant to be enjoyed as poems, not scrutinized for lexical fidelity. Many posts also contain an mp3 recording of me reading the original text aloud. Some also contain supplementary material after the poem itself such as a commentary or literal translation, if I think it necessary.
These posts are work in progress, and I frequently revise old translations when I have a new idea as to how to render (or, rather, re-render) a phrase or a line. Don't be surprised if you come back to one of my translations only to find that half the lines have changed.
Since my teenage years, I have loved (nay, been obsessed with) languages and learned them ravenously. In the process, I sometimes found poems that I wanted to share with those who didn't speak the original language. Often, the translations I found (especially ones into English) were of poor-quality, if I found them at all. I considered publishing my own translations, but then realized that that would do little to actually bring the poetry to people who wanted to read it. After all, how likely is it that a reader versed in English, looking for a particular Arabic poem by Ibn Al-Arabi, is going to happen to pick up the right edition of Poetry Magazine that contains it? How many web-users actually buy a book on a subject when the Internet fails them?
This blog is an experimental attempt to share information. It is intended primarily for an English-reading audience composed of fellow students, fellow language geeks, fellow poetry geeks and really anyone with a hankering for the poetry of other languages and literary traditions. Apparently, this site is getting a large number of Google hits from people googling individual poems. So it looks like my experiment is a success.
I'm A.Z. Foreman, a twenty-something who majored in linguistics and began this blog in college. In fact, most of this About section was typed on my laptop while lying in bed at noon in an outlandishly messy dorm room with last night's half-eaten pizza still in its box on the floor about to become breakfast.