The Song Cave
The Song Cave
When autumn sends a shiver
Down the mountain
Place the swan’s eye on your neck
Wondrous wind in the dead of night
I love you I’ve been told
The first book-length translation of works by this important Egyptian-born, Lebanese-French poet, Poetries presents the core of Georges Schehadé’s (1905-1989) œuvre. Though best known as a dramatist, Schehadé was first and foremost a poet. His lifework was the seven volumes of crystalline poems published over a span of nearly a half-century (1938-1985), each successive volume simply and enigmatically titled Poetries. It is from these seven books that our selection has been drawn.
In 1986, the Académie Française awarded Georges Schehadé the inaugural Grand Prix de la Francophonie. Despite having received wide admiration from his contemporaries—including Max Jacob, Octavio Paz, André Breton, and Paul Éluard—the poetry of Georges Schehadé is virtually unknown today, with this collection being the very first translated into English. In his translator’s note, Austin Carder calls this collection “a lullaby or an enigmatic fairy tale told before bed. Its tone is one of self-sufficient prayer—a pronouncement rather than a plea—addressed to no one in particular and to anyone. These weathered songs key into the language of music, not by approximating its effects but by innervating sparks of meaning that flash forth…Schehadé’s broken-off parables convulse with the dual beauty of both hymn and elegy.”
Author: Georges Schehadé, translated by Austin Carder
Dimensions: 5.5 x 7.5 in.