Monday, March 22, 2010

Vera Pavlova

On Sunday, Kris and I went to a poetry reading. On the way to poetry readings, Kris usually asks about the poet we're going to see and I tell him what I know about them and their work. This time, Kris asked about the poet, and I knew almost nothing. "Why are we going if we don't know anything about the poet or her poetry?" I try to do research before I go to readings, but sometimes I just go because if there is poetry somewhere, then that's where I want to be.

I'm so glad we went! Pavlova was great. She is Russian, and so is her poetry. Her husband, Steven Seymour translated her work for her book, and also for the reading. At the reading, Pavlova recited her poem, and then Steven read it in English. It was charming and they worked really well together. I loved hearing the work in the native Russian in the poet's voice. In addition to liking the reading style, I also really liked the poems. Here are a couple of them that were published in the New Yorker. I purchased her book and will be posting about it in the future.

There were a lot of Russian speakers in the audience, and I was thinking how rare it must be for them to hear poems in Russian, since they live in the United States.


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