**An exclusive early look at this forthcoming book from Calypso Editions, fall 2014. Currently available only as a pdf until the book is complete later this year.**
"I was born in Ocosingo’s first valley, when my village was still gateway to the jungle, and the jungle was still worthy of its name. In that atmosphere of pain and wonder you could plumb the depths of nature and human nature. In that smithy my soul was forged. There, in the old family house, the war took us by surprise. I kept a hasty record of what I saw and heard during those first 12 fateful days. The very valley that gave rise to my verse has also generated the snapshots which, in brushstrokes of stuttering prose, I transcribe below."—Efraín Bartolomé
Efraín Bartolomé (b. 1950 in Ocosingo, State of Chiapas, Mexico) is a nationally recognized poet and prize-winning environmental activist. His verses have been collected in the following volumes: Agua lustral (Holy Water: Poems, 1982-1987; Col. Lecturas Mexicanas, Conaculta, 1994), Oficio: arder (Poet Afire: Poems, 1982-1997; UNAM, 1999), and El ser que somos (Being Who We Are; Col. Antologías, Editorial Renacimiento, Sevilla, 2006). He’s been awarded the Mexico City Prize, the Aguascalientes National Poetry Award (1984), the Carlos Pellicer Prize for published work (1992), the Gilberto Owen National Literary Prize (1993), the Jaime Sabines International Poetry Prize (1996), the National Forest and Wildlife Merit Prize from the Mexican government, the Chiapas Arts Prize (1998), and the International Latino Arts Award in the United States (2001). He is a member of the National Council of Creative Artists. His poems have been translated into English, French, Portuguese, Italian, German, Arabic, Galician, Nahuatl, Peninsular Mayan, and Esperanto. He works as a psychotherapist in Mexico City.
Kevin Brown was born in Kansas City, Missouri in 1960. A biographer and essayist, he is the author of Malcolm X: His Life and Legacy (1995) and Romare Bearden (1994). He was a contributing editor to the New York Public Library African-American Desk Reference (2000). Since 1978, Brown’s essays, articles and reviews on the visual arts, cinema, dance, literature, music and politics have appeared in Afterimage, The Kansas City Star, Kirkus, the London Times Literary Supplement, The Nation, the Threepenny Review and the Washington Post Book World, among others. He studied under translator Gregory Rabassa at Queens College, City University of New York, where he earned a Bachelor’s degree with dual majors in Spanish as well as Translating & Interpreting from the CUNY Baccalaureate Program for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies, headquartered at the Graduate Center. Brown’s interview with Rabassa was published in the December 2006 issue (Vol.7, No.2) of the University of Delaware’s Review of Latin American Studies. Excerpts from his ongoing translation into English of Efraín Bartolomé’s Ocosingo War Diary have appeared in Asymptote, The Brooklyn Rail, eXchanges and Metamorphoses. Calypso Editions will publish the complete translation in 2014.