Rika Lesser

2014
National Poetry Month--April 2014--Maundy Thursday, 17 April, I participate in the annual reading of Dante's Inferno at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. It begins at 9:00 PM.


2013
Crossings: Words and Music, the event scheduled for Friday, November 2nd, has been cancelled owing to transportation problems (post Sandy). The organizers will reschedule the event as soon as they can. I will repost it when the time comes.


On Friday, 2 November, at 7:30 P.M.--PLEASE NOTE THE TIME, IT HAS CHANGED MORE THAN ONCE SINCE I FIRST POSTED THIS-- in The Lounge at Hudson View Gardens, Pinehurst Avenue and 183rd Street in northern Manhattan, I will read new poems and some of my new translations from Swedish (Tranströmer, Sonnevi, Rynell) and co-translations from Greek (Kiki Dimoula).

The program will also include "The Four Seasons of Futurist Cuisine," a setting of Marinetti's Futurist Cookbook by Pulitzer-Prize-winning composer Aaron Jay Kernis. This is part of the SUNDAY BEST READING SERIES AT THE LOUNGE, taking place on a Friday so that the composer can also be present. We have not seen each other in some 30-odd years when we happened to meet at a concert at Alice Tully Hall and began talking about Tranströmer's poems. In Swedish I'd say, Det var inte igår.

The closest subway stop to The Lounge is 181st Street on the A (use the 184th Street exit). It can also be reached by the 1 train (181st St), and the M98 and M4 buses.


21 September: toward Equinox, I'll read again, with other poets and performers at Feldenkrais Associates, enter at 22 E. 17th St, Rm 1009. Reading begins at 7:30.


National Poetry Month--April 2012--Two readings coming up.
Maundy Thursday, 5 April, I'll participate in the annual reading of Dante's Inferno at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. It begins at 9:00 PM.

27 April, I'll read my own work with other poets on Union Square, at Feldenkrais Associates, enter at 22 East 17th Street, Room 1009. The reading begins at 7:30.


24 February 2012

With about 9000 others, I will be at the AWP Conference in Chicago between 29 February and 3 March. Let me hear from you if you are particularly interested in translating poetry, tai chi, Feldenkrais, going to museums, speaking Swedish . . . .


26 January 2012

It was a great joy to be awakened by Brian Lehrer's assistant on the day my old friend Tomas Tranströmer received the Nobel Prize for Literature! I hope the link to NPR will work for year. Those of you who know how frequently I wake up before 10 will be amazed. And I was honored to participate in events with Tomas's Greek translator, Vasilis Papageorgiou (who has translated ALL his poems, not just a dozen or two) at Harvard and at the Swedish Embassy in Washington, DC in November and December.

Now the bulk of the manuscript of what my Greek collaborator, Cecile Inglessis Margellos, and I hope will be called The Brazen Plagiarist: Selected Poems of Kiki Dimoula has been turned in. I am not entirely sure how we managed to do it, but I know we did. I have begun to send translations out to journals. We hope the book will be published before the end of 2012. And I'm still sure that if it were not for my continuing training in the Feldenkrais Method® (as a student member of the Feldenkrais Guild of North America, I'm getting used to using "service marks") I would not have been able to make these poems what they are in English.... You'll be able to read about this in my Translator's Note. Enough said, for now.

Practice, practice, practice,
and patience, and perseverance.
Peace.
Rika


10 January 2011

In a week's time I will be taking up residence as the Spring 2011 Thornton Writer-in-Residence at Lynchburg College in central Virginia. I'm looking forward to resuming teaching poetry (naturally not only poetry written originally in English). And for the first time, it will have a somatic component, as my practice of tai chi chuan has become more internal and my Feldenkrais training proceeds. What can I say? Come and visit. I will be giving a public reading on 24 February.


3 July 2010

Much has transpired since I published this site in the spring.
Most shocking, primarily to myself, is that I am collaborating on translating the poetry of Kiki Dimoula (b. 1931), who won the Literary Prize of Europe this year, with Cecile Inglessis Margellos, a scholar and translator (of French into Greek). If the gods and geniuses of all the heavens, earths, and languages are willing, we will turn in the manuscript at the end of 2011 and Yale will publish the book the following year as a Margellos World Republic of Letters Book (like Mozart's Third Brain, only bilingual).

I have just read absolutely final proofs for the new Sheep Meadow edition of Etruscan Things, so it or they will truly rise again, and soon.

In August I hope to relax back into my own writing, and perhaps revisit the terra cognito of Swedish and Elisabeth Rynell's poetry and prose while I enjoy a month's fellowship at the Vermont Studio Center. I hope also to review in some way my entire first year of Feldenkrais training, which I will have completed at the end of July. It has made an enormous difference in my life and work.

Before equinox (I'll try to update this page seasonally), I will return to Sweden, to meet with Rynell, old friends, and to attend the Gothenburg Book Fair. If you will be there, let me know.

Sommaren har nu vänt . . .

Rika


Ides March 2010

At long last I have published this website. Please return for more information,and let me know what you think.
I will be adding additional pages in the near future

Male ceia hia and all best wishes!

Rika

Poetry
The Sheep Meadow Press, 2008            
University of South Carolina Press, 1997   
University of North Texas Press, 1995    
Braziller Series of Poetry, 1983; Sheep Meadow Press, 2010
Poetry in Translation
Yale University Press, 2009 Margellos World Republic of Letters
Princeton University Press, 1993     Lockert Library of Poetry in Translation     
Barnes & Noble Classics, 2007     
by Gunnar Ekelöf University of Massachusetts Press, 1980 (out of print)
Princeton University Press, 1986    Lockert Library of Poetry in Translation           (out of print)
Retold with Pictures
First by the Grimms, then by Lesser & Paul O. Zelinksy

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