SEATTLE—Calypso Editions is proud to host two events celebrating the best in Eastern European poetry today, featuring Polish poet Tadeusz Dabrowski, Romanian translator Adam Sorkin, and Romanian translator and poet Martin Woodside.

Tadeusz Dąbrowski is a poet, essayist, critic, and editor of the literary bimonthly “Topos”. He has been published in many journals in Poland and abroad, including, in America, Boston Review, Agni, American Poetry Review, Tin House, Crazyhorse, Poetry Daily, Guernica, and Poetry Review. Altogether, his work has been translated into 20 languages. Winner of numerous awards, among others, the Kościelski Prize (2009), the Hubert Burda Prize (2008) and, from Tadeusz Różewicz, the Prize of the Foundation for Polish Culture (2006). Tadeusz is the author of six volumes of poetry, and the first collection of his poetry in English translation, Black Square has just been released by Zephyr Press. He lives in Gdańsk.

Timothy Donnelly writes: “Restlessly inventive, sharp-witted, and intent on raising mischief, the poems in Black Square are so much fun to read, it’s almost easy to overlook how deeply serious they are—and how dark. Dąbrowski is part life of the party, part heavy-hearted metaphysician, and he plays his two sides off each other like an expert comedy team with a knack for aphorism and philosophical speculation.”

Adam J. Sorkin has translated more than forty books of contemporary Romanian literature, and his work has won the Poetry Society of the United Kingdom translation prize, among other awards. Sorkin’s recent books include A Path to the Sea by Liliana Ursu, translated by Ursu, Sorkin, and Tess Gallagher (Pleasure Boat Studios), and Ioan Flora’s Medea and Her War Machines, translated with Alina Cârâc (University of New Orleans Press), both 2011. Forthcoming from Talisman House Publishers is The Vanishing Point That Whistles, an anthology of contemporary Romanian poetry. Sorkin is Distinguished Professor of English, Penn State Brandywine.

Mark Strand writes: „Liliana Ursu’s poems are like flowers at the the edge of the abyss. They are beautifully clear and precise, but behind them one glimpes the presence of an ineradicable dark.”

Martin Woodside is a poet, translator, and a founding member of Calypso Editions. His chapbook of poetry, Stationary Landscapes came out in 2009 (Pudding House), and his anthology of Romanian poetry, Of Gentle Wolves, came out earlier this year (Calypso). Martin’s poems and translations have appeared in numerous literary journals, including Guernica, The Cimarron Review, The Hazmat Review, Brooklyn Rail, Poetry International, Poesis International, and qarrtsinluni. Martin spent 2009-10 on a Fulbright in Romania, studying Romanian poetry, and he’s currently a Presidential Fellow at Rutgers-Camden, pursuing a Ph.D. in Childhood Studies.

Ilya Kaminsky Writes: “Woodside’s translations perform miracles. There is no other way to say this: the poems are alive, they breathe, they laugh and howl, they re-create our world again. This is an anthology to live with: a sample or two from such established authors such as the venerable elders Marin Sorescu and Ana Blandiana, to many new voices that are restless, ruthless, ravishing and utterly lyrical.”

Tadeusz Dabrowski, Adam Sorkin, and Martin Woodside will all appear at the Moonstone Arts Center on Oct. 7th at 7 pm. Dabrowksi and Woodside will also appear at the Penn Book Center on Oct 8th at 2 pm. Both of these events feature a rare U.S. appearance by Dabrowski, one of the most celebrated young poets in Europe.


Martin Woodside
Calypso Editions


NEW YORK—The finest of Polish poet Anna Swir’s groundbreaking work is now available in a new English translation from Calypso Editions. Building the Barricade and Other Poems includes Swir’s astonishing poems on the Warsaw Uprising and the human body, many of which have been out of print since the 1970s. As the centenary of Nobel laureate and fellow Polish poet Czesław Miłosz approaches, Calypso is thrilled to bring these fresh translations from a neglected master championed tirelessly by Miłosz.

Calypso Editions received worldwide media attention for its inaugural title, Leo Tolstoy’s classic story How Much Land Does a Man Need. Boris Dralyuk’s innovative translation received glowing praise from media outlets such as the New Yorker, the National Review, the Times Literary Supplement, and Three Percent.
Piotr Florczyk’s Building the Barricade and Other Poems follows in this tradition of excellence, already receiving rave reviews from authors like Edward Hirsch, Katie Ford, and Sandra Alcosser.

Alcosser, winner of the prestigious James Laughlin Award and author of Except by Nature, describes Florczyk’s masterful translation of the poems as done “with chilling precision, constructing equations that become magical spells to address the twentieth century and serve as cautionary tales for the twenty-first.”

Hirsch, president of the Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and author of The Living Fire: New and Selected Poems, describes the poems as having “the urgency and clarity of a poet staring back at a burning building from which she somehow escaped, except the building is Poland and she is looking back in memory, talking to its war-torn corpses, and to us, the lucky recipients of these explosive poems.”

In 1974, a decade before her death, Swir published Building the Barricade, a work from which the majority of Calypso’s translations were selected. The volume was strongly influenced by her experiences during World War II and what she witnessed while working as a military nurse. The original intensity of her work has been painstakingly recaptured by Florczyk, an American poet and translator of Polish poetry.

Florczyk is the recipient of the 2007 Anna Akhmatova Fellowship for Younger Translators, holds an MFA from San Diego State University, and has taught at the University of Delaware. In addition to being the editor and translator of Been and Gone: Poems of Julian Kornhauser (Marick Press, 2009), Florczyk’s poems and reviews have appeared in publications including Slate, Boston Review, America
Magazine, Pleiades, Notre Dame Review, The Southern Review, West Branch
, and World Literature Today.


When: Feb. 10, 7 p.m.
Where: Pacific Standard Bar, Brooklyn, N.Y.

New York City, N.Y., Jan. 27 – The Chin Music Reading Series, now in its fourth year after being named the “Best New Literary Event of 2008” by New York Magazine, will celebrate the Tolstoy Centennial on Feb. 10, 2011, with bilingual readings from Leo Tolstoy’s How Much Land Does a Man Need, the inaugural title from Calypso Editions. The event, cosponsored by Melville House, features two of Russia’s brightest literary stars—Polina Barskova and Boris Dralyuk—who will honor the timeless master with poetry and readings in Russian from a work James Joyce called “the greatest story the literature of the world knows.”

Contrary to the silence and official snubbing from Russia at the Tolstoy Centennial—front page news in the New York Times on Jan. 3—two of Russia’s finest poets will join translator Boris Dralyuk in a staged reading of How Much Land and their own poems. Polina Barskova is widely considered one of the best living Russian poets and was recently the only woman nominated for the prestigious Andrei Bely Prize. Boris Dralyuk starred in the year-long PBS documentary Senior Year as a Russian Jewish intellectual teenager and will fulfill that early promise with the simultaneous launch of his first two major works of translation in the same week. In addition to translating the inaugural title from Calypso Editions, Dralyuk is also one of two translators of Barskova’s The Zoo in Winter: Collected Poems (Melville House).

In How Much Land Does a Man Need, an astonishing fable of greed originally published in 1886, Tolstoy departs from the realist mode of his great novels—War and Peace and Anna Karenina—and adopts the markedly oral narrative style of skaz, a language at once rich and easily accessible. While previous translators have smoothed out the idiosyncrasies of the form, Boris Dralyuk’s translation, declared “an excellent edition of a small but important work” by The Times Literary Supplement, retains the color and voice so vital to the tale.

About Calypso Editions:

Calypso Editions is an artist-run, cooperative press dedicated to publishing quality literary books of poetry and fiction with a global perspective. Our only criteria is excellence. We believe that literature is essential to building an international community of readers and writers and that books can serve as a physical artifact of beauty and wonder in a world of digital saturation. Our upcoming books include Building the Barricade and Other Poems of Anna Swir, translated from the Polish by Piotr Florczyk, and Of Gentle Wolves: An Anthology of Romanian Poetry, translated by Martin Woodside. Calypso Editions cooperative members include Piotr Florczyk, Martin Woodside, Elizabeth Myhr, Tony Bonds, Matt Rowe, Brandon Lussier, Jennifer Hope, and Derick Burleson. For more information, contact us at