In October, OOMPH! was lucky enough to collaborate with a wonderful bunch of translators and poets as part of Emory University's Literature is Alive reading series. We wanted to present a variety of Spanish-language poetry and provide those in attendance at the event with a truly unique experience, tying together languages, formats, and identities. Each of the poets provided us with a video of themselves reading their work in Spanish, which was played at the event. A free pamphlet featuring side-by-side translations of the works being read by each poet was also made available to guests.
The reading/event was unique in the sense that it allowed readers an experience to "prioritize sound and feeling over instant meaning/understanding," as event organizer and poet Carrie Lorig so elegantly put it. The event forced the audience to become listeners in a way I'm sure many of them were unaccustomed to, and changed their roles as readers of poetry as well, and in this sense it brought them closer to the essence of language, it's malleability and power.
For those who were unable to make it to the event in Atlanta, we'd like to make the same opportunity available to you by providing the videos of each reader, as well as the pamphlet of side-by-side translations which appear and can be downloaded here. Our first video is from Chilean poet Carlos Soto-Román, and it was produced by poet and filmmaker Pablo Fante of Estudios Banana. Enjoy!
Carlos Soto-Román is a pharmacist, poet, and translator. He holds a Master of Bioethics from the University of Pennsylvania. In Chile, he has published: La Marcha de los Quiltros (1999), Haikú Minero (2007) and Cambio y Fuera (2009). In the United States: Philadelphia’s Notebooks (Otoliths, 2011), Chile Project: [Re-Classified] (Gauss PDF, 213), The Exit Strategy (Belladonna, 2014) and Alternative Set of Procedures (Corollary Press, 2014). His work can be found in CruxDesperationis, Summer’s Stock, P-Queue, Capitalism Nature Socialism, Where Eagles Dare, Mandorla, Asphodel, Hold and The American Poetry Review. He is a MacDowell Fellow and has been awarded with scholarships from the Chilean Council for Culture and the Arts.