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’.
Indran Amirthanayagam writes in English, Spanish, French, Portuguese and Haitian Creole. He has published thirteen poetry collections thus far, including The Elephants of Reckoning (Hanging Loose Press,NY,1993) which won the 1994 Paterson Prize in the United States, Uncivil war (Tsar/now Mawenzi House, Toronto,2013) and The Splintered Face: Tsunami Poems (Hanging Loose Press,NY,2008). His latest books are IL n’est de solitude quel’ile lointaine (Les Editions, Haiti,2017), Pwezi a Kat Men, written with Alex Laguerre (Delince Editions, Miami,2017), and Ventana Azul (El Tapiz del Unicornio, Mexico City,2016). Two new manuscripts, Paolo 9, a suite of poems about the case of Paolo Guerrero and the World Cup and En busca de posada are forthcoming in 2019.
Adil Jussawalla is the author of four books of poems. The third of these, trying to Say Goodbye, won the Sahitya Akademi award (2014) for a work in English. Some of his non-fiction has appeared in Maps for a Mortal Moon (2014) and more of it, along with a selection of his poems and fiction, in I Dreamt a Horse Fell from the Sky (2015.) He also edited the anthology New Writing in India (1974). He was born in Bombay in 1940 and has lived there most of his life.
Kersy Katrak was born in Bombay in 1936, was ordained a Parsi priest at 12, and began writing poetry at 16. Mentored by Nissim Ezekial,Katrak was one of the finest poets published in the Illustrated weekly of India in the early post-independence years. In 1965, he founded MCM,the agency that went on to spearhead a creative revolution in Indian advertising. Katrak published four volumes of collected verse from 1969 through the next two decades: A Journal of the Way (1969) Diversions by the Wayside (1969) Underworld (1979) Purgatory: Songs from the Holy Planet (1984) He also published a book of spiritual essays, Five Little Sermons Went To Market (1971), co-written with his wife, Usha.
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).
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.