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Doris Kareva, Shape of Time

Translated Tiina Aleman, Arc Publications, 142 pages; hardback £13.99, paperback £10.99.

In her Translator’s Preface, Tiina Aleman explains how closely she and Doris Kareva worked on the poems in this volume. Kareva herself is a well-regarded translator who has translated widely from English into Estonian, so I assume these versions achieve a high level of fidelity to the originals. They certainly read well in English and many achieve great power:

I saw you for two and a half seconds
after two and a half years.
That blink of an eye burns in my vision,
devastating, renewing.

Lightning, quake, and flood together
in an … Continue Reading