Beowulf: A Translation

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punctum books, 2012 - American poetry - 297 pages
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A stunning experimental translation of the Old English poem "Beowulf," over 30 decades old and woefully neglected, by the contemporary poet Thomas Meyer, who studied with Robert Kelly at Bard, and emerged from the niche of poets who had been impacted by the brief moment of cross-pollination between U.K. and U.S. experimental poetry in the late 1960s and early 1970s, a movement inspired by Ezra Pound, fueled by interactions among figures like Ed Dorn, J.H. Prynne, and Basil Bunting, and quickly overshadowed by the burgeoning Language Writing movement. Meyer's translation -- completed in 1972 but never before published -- is sure to stretch readers' ideas about what is possible in terms of translating Anglo-Saxon poetry, as well as provide new insights on the poem itself. According to John Ashberry, Meyer's translation of this thousand-year-old poem is a "wonder," and Michael Davidson hails it as a "major accomplishment" and a "vivid" recreation of this ancient poem's "modernity."
 

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About the author (2012)

Thomas Meyer was born on Saint Valentine's Day and has always lived where there are cows and there is rain: for many years in the Yorkshire Dales, but now and more recently above a vineyard in North Carolina, at the southernmost end of the Appalachians, on the western slope of Happy Hill at Skywinding Farm. After graduating from Bard College, he joined Jonathan Williams in forty years of domestic partnership and advocacy of the Jargon Society. His recent books include At Dusk Iridescent (A Gathering of Poems, 1972-97), Coromandel, and a translation of the daode jing.

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