“Fratelli” by Giuseppe Ungaretti

Here is my adaptation of another WWI poem by Giuseppe Ungaretti. Once again, the English translation is by Marco Sonzogni and Ross Woods. (click on image to enlarge)
fratelli 001

Here are the original Italian words:

Fratelli

Di che reggimento siete
fratelli?

Parola tremante
nella notte

Nell’aria spasimante
involontaria rivolta
dell’uomo presente alla sua
fragilità

Fratelli

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“Vigil” by Giuseppe Ungaretti

Here is my adaptation of “Veglia,” a short poem by the Italian poet Giuseppe Ungaretti. The poem was translated into English by Marco Sonzogni and Ross Woods, two professors at Victoria University of Wellington, in New Zealand.
Ungaretti (1888-1970) was one of the most innovative and influential Italian poets of the twentieth century, one of the originators of ermetismo (“Hermeticism”), the current of poetry with which Salvatore Quasimodo (one of whose poem I adapted earlier) is also associated. Ungaretti had greeted Italy’s entry into World War I with enthusiasm, and enrolled as a volunteer. The brutal realities of life and death in  the trenches quickly caused him to become disillusioned with the war, however, and also moved him to write his celebrated war poems. (click on image to enlarge)
ungaretti 001

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“Witch-Wife” in “Splitting the Genre: An Intersection of Poetry & Visual Art”

Six Arrow press is a new literary press based in San Diego. They have just released their first book, an anthology of creative combinations of poetry and visual art. I am pleased to announce that my adaptation into comics of Edna St. Vincent Millay’s poem “Witch-Wife” is among the included works.
The book, entitled Splitting the Genre: An Intersection of Poetry and Visual Art, can be purchased here:

http://www.blurb.com/b/5377678-splitting-the-genre-an-intersection-of-poetry-visu

For more information on this project and upcoming releases from Six Arrow press:http://sixarrowpress.kevindublin.com/

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“Witch-Wife” by Edna St. Vincent Millay

Here is my adaptation of an Edna St. Vincent Millay poem first published in 1917. In her wonderful biography of Millay, Savage Beauty, Nancy Milford describes “Witch-Wife” as “clearly something of a self-portrait,” and that is the interpretation that I have gone with here (click on images to enlarge):
Witch Wife Color1Witch Wife Color2

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“And Suddenly It’s Evening”

Here is an English version of my comic-strip adaptation of the Italian poet Salvatore Quasimodo’s iconic poem “Ed è subito sera” (“And suddenly it’s evening”):
And Suddenly It's Evening

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My first Italian poetry comic! – “Ed è subito sera” by Salvatore Quasimodo

I have begun a collaboration with the Italian poetry magazine Atelier (http://www.atelierpoesia.it/) in which I will periodically provide comics versions of classic Italian poems for their website. Here is my adaptation of Salvatore Quasimodo’s 1930 poem “Ed è subito sera” (“And suddenly it’s evening”), one of the shortest, but also one of the most well-known poems in the Italian literary canon:
Quasimodoitaliano
Quasimodo (1901-1968) is associated with a current of Italian poetry known as ermetismo(hermeticism). The ermetici –perhaps somewhat unusually for Italians– believed in the value of expressing themselves using only a few carefully selected words. Their typically very brief, synthetic compositions are meant to suggest multiple shades of meaning and emotion.  Because the poems of the ermetici depend so much on the connotative value of words, they are particularly difficult to translate (let alone illustrate!). A more-or-less literal translation of “Ed è subito sera” could be as follows:

And Suddenly It’s Evening

Each of us is alone on the heart of the earth
Pierced/run through by a ray of sun:
And suddenly it’s evening.

 

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Italian Erotic Comics at the CSSC Conference

fumettineri7fumettineri10

I will be presenting a paper at the conference of the Canadian Society for the Study of Comics, which takes place this weekend in Toronto, May 8 to 10, in collaboration with the Toronto Comics Art Festival.

My presentation, which is based on a portion of my recently-completed master’s thesis, is titled “‘Tiny Forbidden Windows: Italian Erotic Comics of the 1960s and Dino Buzzati’s Poema a fumetti.” My talk will examine the connection between Poema a fumetti, a ground-breaking graphic novel from 1969 written and illustrated by the Italian novelist Dino Buzzati, and the genre that was then emerging in Italy of adult pulp comics. I argue that Buzzati was able to see in comics the possibility of a new, more direct and less baggage-laden means of developing the existential themes that had always been at the heart of his literary production because these mass-produced adult comics had already infused the medium with a certain raw immediacy and an undercurrent of unexpressed impulses and desires.

All CSSC and TCAF events are free and open to the public. Just in case you happen to be in Toronto and are interested in hearing my talk, I will be presenting on Friday, May 9, at 2:30, in the “Rosedale Room” of the Marriott Hotel, at 90 Bloor Street East. I’d love to see you there!

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