In preparing for my spring 2013 sabbatical from Morehead State University, I knew I wanted to translate contemporary poems from the Spanish to English. I happened upon uspoetsinmexico quite by chance and began to correspond with their director, Sheila Lanham. I sent her some of my poems in English and Spanish along with some translations. I asked her to recommend a Mexican poet whose work might welcome the adventures of translation. She contacted Mario Bojorquez, who has been a featured reader at the uspoetsinmexico annual January conference.
Bojorquez was kind enough to send me manuscripts of two of his recently published works. I chose to work with his award-winning book of poems, El deseo postergado. I especially admire its relentless drive to the core of a “total wound” that creates the book’s center of gravity. I am also attracted to the rich, inventive language that churns and leaps through these poems.
Mario Bojorquez has a strong and expanding reputation as one of his generation’s most valued poets. In 2007 he was awarded the Premio Nacional de Poesia Aguascalientes, a major national prize. Additional honors include the Abigael Bohorquez prize, the Nacional Clemencia Isaura and the Nacional de Poesia Enriqueta Ochoa. His volume, El deseo postergado, has been awarded the first Premio Alhambra de Poesia Americana. Bojorquez is currently Profesor de Retorica en la Fundacion para las Letras Mexicanos where he conducts poetry workshops. He is also a translator and an editor for the electronic review, Circulo de Poesia. This July my spouse and I plan to visit Mario Bojorquez in Mexico and continue working together to bring his beautiful and generous voice to English readers.
With a heavy wound, no longer a rope around the neck With the empty noose and the erect grief That does not beg anymore That the worm-eaten bone is not beaten Nor the last vision Nearly unified here I begin to remember a shadow of another time Moored to docks of the air I begin to remember and speak Seven words a dull harvest for your cruel memory Beyond the river Where the city rests in its bright diving suit Where I dreamed some day to return In order to remain myself The desires evaporating There remains of me only a vague essence That no longer names me No longer containing all the vigor, The luster of another burning time...