A sense of evening pervades Christos Koukis’ Modern Guilt, translated into English by Katerina Anghelaki-Rooke and Elle Arscott. This twilight is historical, ridden by the background of the financial crisis in Greece, as much as poetic, where ‘we are rich in such a way that no bank condescends to accept us’. But like all things Greek, there is the sun, which peeks at odd places and throws light on hidden corners. In Koukis’ world, the sun glints, before setting at nine o’clock behind the Acropolis, even if ‘deep down, the light makes things difficult’.
It is in this sense that Modern Guilt holds a mirror to us, our anxieties and vanities. The earthquakes in Modern Guilt are political. History is ugly and ‘the country does not go to sleep with clear conscience’. Continuing in the tradition of the modern Greek masters, Koukis has use for antiquity, but this antiquity is not removed from history, its pain and betrayal. It provides no respite, only hard lessons. The financial earthquake of Greece is but one more link in that story.
Yet in its moments of crises, hope shines through —‘there is a feeling of life that never abandons us, an honest victory’. There is redemption in love and in the hope of love. Amidst the shadows, for Koukis it ultimately ‘doesn’t matter’, for even ‘Dresden was rebuilt and now it shines’.
Ashraf Aboul-Yazid (1963) is an Egyptian writer, poet, novelist and journalist.
He is the Editor-in-Chief of the Silk Road Literature Series (since 2016). He has documented his travel writings covering more than 30 countries spanning over two decades.
He was named the Person of the Year in Culture, Kazan, Tatarstan in 2013. He won the Manhae Grand Prize in Literature, Korea in 2014. He was the winner of the Arab Journalism Award in Culture, UAE, in 2015. He is the member of the Egyptian Writers’ Union and the President of AJA (Asia Journalist Association), Korea.
His books in Arabic include-
Washwashat Al Bahr, (The Whisper of the Sea), Cairo, 1989.
Al Asdaf, (the Shells), Cairo, 1996.
Zakirat Al Samt, (The Memory of the Silence), Beirut, 2000.
Fawqa Sirat Al Mawt, (On the Passage of Death), Cairo, 2001.
akirat Al Farashat, (the memory of Butterflies), Cairo, 2005.
Shamawes, Cairo, 2008.
Hadiqaton Khalfeyya (A Backyard Garden), Cairo, 2011.
(31), Cairo, 2011.
AT-Turjoman (The Translator), Cairo, 2018.
BIOGRAPHIES, CRITICISMS AND TRAVELS
Sirat Al Lawn, (the Story of Color), Art Criticism, Cairo, 2003.
Muzakkrat Musafer, (The Memories of a Traveler) Biography on Al-Sheikh Mustafa Abdul Razik travels to France, Abu Dhabi, UAE, 2004.
Al Shiekh Mustafa Abdu lRaziq Musaferan wa Muqiman, (Al Azhar Sheikh Travels and Memories at home), Travels, Cairo, 2006.
Sirat Musafer (A Traveler tale), Travels, Cairo, 2008.
Abath al Shabab (The Joy of the Youth), Bayrem Al-Tunsi papers in Tunisia, Alexandria, Bibliotheca, 2008.
Noon Anniswa Nahrol-Fan, Feminine N, River of Art, Biography, Dar Al-Hilal, Cairo 2013
The Silk Road (A Cultural Pictorial Encyclopedia) Alexandria Bibliotheca, 2013
A River on Travel (Travels), Al-Arabi Books, Kuwait, 2015
The Caravan of Moroccan Tales, travels, Milano, 2017
Naguib Mahfouz, the narrator and the artist, art articles, Cairo, 2018
The Story of an Artist Who Lived 5000 Years, History of Art for Children, Cairo 2006.
The Arab World Kids, Poems for Children, Kuwait, 2006.
The Arab Travelers (Rahhalatol Arab), for children, Kuwait, 2009
The Sea Post Fish Poetic story for Children, Kuwait, 2011.
Shurali (The Carpenter and the Evil of the Forest), a folk tale by the Tatar poet Abdullah Tukay, for Children, Kuwait, 2011
The Sheep and the Goat, a folk tale by the Tatar poet Abdullah Tukay, for Children, Kuwait, 2013
TRANSLATIONS INTO ARABIC FROM OTHER LANGUAGES
Korean Folk Tales, for Children, Al-Arabi Books, Kuwait, 2008
I and Surrealism, Salvador Dali, (Biography), Dubai al-Thaqafeyya magazine, UAE, 2010
One Thousand & One Lives, an Anthology of Selected Poems Written by the Korean Poet Ko Un), Dubai Thaqafeyya magazine, UAE, 2012
Qeddison Youhalleqo Baaidan (The Far-off Saint), Translated Poems Written by the Korean Poet Cho O-hyun, Bait-Alghasham, Muscat, Oman, 2013
A Depressingly Monotonous Landscape, Poetry Collection by Indian poet Hemant Divate, Cairo, 2016
TRANSLATIONS IN OTHER LANGUAGES
Shamawes, (Novel), (Korean), Seoul, South Korea, 2008
Una calle en el Cairo, (A street in Cairo), Poetry, (Spanish), Costa Rica, 2010
Adrian Grima (Malta,1968) is a prizewinning author of collections of poetry and short stories in Maltese. He has read his poetry in many countries in the Mediterranean and Europe, and also in Australia, India, Nicaragua, and Bali and Makassar in Indonesia. Anthologies of his poetry in translation have appeared in Arabic, English, German, Italian and French. Adrian Grima teaches Maltese literature and representations of the Mediterranean at the University of Malta. Last-ditch Ecstasy is a translation by Albert Gatt of his most recent collection of poems in Maltese, Klin u Kaprii Ora (KKM 2015).
K. Satchidanandan, perhaps the most widely translated of contemporary Indian poets, has 23 collections of his poetry in 19 languages including English, Irish, Arabic, Chinese, French, German and Italian besides all-important Indian languages. His collected poems in three volumes – about 1400 pages- came out in 2006 and his collected translations from world poetry were published in four volumes – about 1700 pages- in 2012-14. His books of English translations, While I Write: New and Selected Poems (Harper-Collins India) came out in 2011 and Misplaced Objects and Other Poems (Sahitya Akademi, Delhi) in 2014. His New and Selected Poems in English translation, a large volume of about 600 pages, The Missing Rib, is due to appear very soon from Poetrywala, Bombay. Satchidanandan was a Professor of English in Kerala and later moved to Delhi to edit Indian Literature , the organ of the Sahitya Akademi ( The National Academy of Literature in India) and served as its Chief Executive for a decade. Later he was a Language Policy Adviser to the Govt of India, the Director and Professor of Translation Studies at the Indira Gandhi National Open University and the editor of the SAARC journal Beyond Borders and of the South Asian Library of Literature, a book series. All through he has also been a cultural activist working for peace, environment and human and minority rights. His poetry stands against all forms of violence. Satchidanandan writes poetry in Malayalam, and prose in Malayalam and English and has more than 20 collections of poetry besides several books of travel, plays and criticism and translations of poetry from around the world and five books originally written in English on Indian literature. This is besides the 20 -odd books in three languages that he has edited. He has represented India in several Literary Festivals and Book Fairs across the world including those in Delhi, Jaipur, Bombay, Chandigarh, Ahmedabad, Lahore, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Dubai, Damascus, Berlin, London, Manchester, Liverpool, Wales, New York, Washington, Hay, Paris, Frankfurt, Bonn, Leipzig, Beijing, Shanghai, Rotterdam, Medellin, Havana, Lima, Sarajevo, Vilenica, Madrid, Soria, Segovia, Avila and Moscow. Satchidanandan is a Fellow of the Kerala Sahitya Akademi and has won 32 literary awards and Fellowships including Sahitya Akademi Award, Kerala Sahitya Akademi Award five times, (for poetry, drama, travelogue, translation, criticism), Gangadhar Meher National Award (Orissa) , Kusumagraj National Award ( Maharashtra), NTR National Award ( Andhra Pradesh), Kuvempu National Award ( Karnataka), Kamala Surayya Award ( Dubai),Oman Cultural Centre Award ( Muscat),Kala Award for Total Literary Contribution ( London), K. K. Birla Fellowship for Comparative Literature, Sreekant Verma Fellowship for Translation and the Senior Fellowship from the Govt of India besides Knighthood of the Order of Merit from the Government of Italy and India-Poland Friendship Medal from the Government of Poland. He was on the Ladbroke list of Nobel probables in 2011. A film on him, SummerRain was released in 2007.At present he is a National Fellow at the Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla, India.
Dinkar Manwar (1965) is a poet, editor and an artist.
He co-edits a Marathi magazine- Atirikt, which is dedicated to Literature of the Nineties and the Post-Nineties era.
He was on the editorial board of Shabdved, published from Shegaon.
Dinkar Manwar’s poems have been published in various literary magazine like – Shabdved, AbhidhaNantar, Khel, Navakshar Darshan, Anustubh, Kalnirnay, Mukt Shabd and many others.
His poems have also been translated and published in Hindi and English too.
Manwar’s works of art have appeared in his books of poetry, namely- Drushya Naslelya Drushyat, Popular Publication, Mumbai (2014) and Ajunahi Barach Kahi Baaki, by Poetrywala, Mumbai (2016).
Drushya Naslelya Drushyat has been into English by Nitin Wagh and titled- Between the Lines – The Undeciphered Script of Khandav Van, August 2017.
Manwar has won the 1. Barashiv Sahitya Puraskar,2016 for Drushya Naslelya Drushyat. 2.The State Government – Kavi Keshavsut Kavya Puraskar ,2016 for Ajunahi Barach Kahi Baaki and the 3. Gadhinglaj Nagar Parishad Pujya Sane Guruji Sahitya Puraskar ,2017 for Ajunahi Barach Kahi Baaki.
Mustansir Dalvi was born in Bombay. He teaches architecture in Mumbai. His poems are included in the anthologies: These My Words: The Penguin Book of Indian Poetry (Eunice de Souza and Melanie Silgardo, editors); Mind Mutations (Sirrus Poe, editor); The Bigbridge Online Anthology of Contemporary Indian Poetry (Menka Shivdasani, editor); The Dance of the Peacock: An Anthology of English Poetry from India (Vivekanand Jha, editor); To Catch a Poem: An Anthology of Poetry for Young People (Jane Bhandari and Anju Makhija, editors); and The Enchanting Verses Literary Review (online, Abhay K, editor). Mustansir Dalvi?s 2012 English translation of Muhammad Iqbal's influential Shikwa and Jawaab-e-Shikwa from the Urdu as Taking Issue and Allah's Answer (Penguin Classics) has been described as 'insolent and heretical' and makes Iqbal's verse accessible to the modern reader. This book was awarded Runner Up for Best Translation at the Muse India National Literary Award in 2012. His translations of the Sufi mystic poet Rahim are published in the anthology Eating God: a Book of Bhakti Poetry (Arundhati Subramanium, editor). His most recent book is struggles with imagined gods – selected translations of the poems of Hemant Divate from the Marathi, published by Poetrywala in 2014. Brouhahas of Cocks is his first book of poems in English published by Poetrywala in 2013. Mustansir Dalvi's poems have been translated into French, Croatian and Marathi.