Portaits of Absence
Guernica Editons, Essential Translation Series, 2017
Translated from the Italian by Marco Sonzogni & Ross Woods
Portraits of Absence is poetry of witness, of unflinching eyewitness accounts of atrocities--the devil's definition of humanity. Fabiano Alborghetti's words, unfolding with machine-gun hiccoughs and staccato rhythms, spaces where the dead drop and the living fall, weeping, are tactile, palpable, sonnets of wreckage and ruin. Consider him a 21st-century Wilfred Owen or Siegfried Sassoon, with even less reticence before Horror than either of those Great War Poets. Alborghetti is an essential voice, a cry out-of-the-wilderness of our own bad, mad, sad hearts. We are lucky to have such a courageous Cassandra; we are damned that he has so much Terror to report to us. These are magnificent, impressive lyrics, unforgettable in their heart-tearing, barbed-wire-laced, gung-ho Sorrow.
George Elliott Clarke, Parliamentary/Canadian Poet Laureate (2016-17)
Marco Sonzogni (Dr) was educated at the Università degli Studi di Pavia (Almo Collegio Borromeo), the National University of Ireland (Dublin), the University of Dublin (Trinity College), Victoria University of Wellington and the University of Auckland. He’s an award-winning poet, literary translator and editor and currently Senior Lecturer in Italian at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. He has been the recipient of several translation awards, including the Looren Translation Grant and the Pro Helvetia Translation Grant, in recognition of published translations as well as on the merits of an ongoing translation projects. In 2013 and in 2014 respectively, the Republic of Italy and the Republic of Poland bestowed on him the Order of Merit for services to culture.
Ross Woods, is a Lecturer in the Spanish Programme of the School of Languages and Cultures at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, translator Ross Woods specializes in post-Civil War Spanish literature, with a particular focus on the theme of memory in the poetry of José Manuel Caballero Bonald. Among his publications: Understanding the Poetry of Jose Manuel Caballero Bonald: The Function of Memory in a Spanish Writer's Art (2012) and Revisiting the Past: Memory and Trauma in the Postwar Spanish Novel, (eds. Sarah Leggott and Ross Woods, 2013)