New Books of Poetry- José Luís Peixoto- A Child in Ruins (translated poems by Hugo dos Santos)

José Luís Peixoto is one of Portugal’s most acclaimed and bestselling contemporary novelists. He was born in 1974 in Galveias, in the region of Alentejo (Portugal). Has studied Modern languages and literatures in Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Since 2000, Peixoto has published twelve titles (5 novels, 4 fiction books and 3 poetry collections). He is three-times a winner of the Jovens Criadores Prize. His first novel “Nenhum Olhar” (published as “Blank Gaze” in the UK by Bloomsbury and as “The Implacable Order of Things” in the USA by Doubleday/Anchor/Random House) was shortlisted in all major literary awards in Portugal and won the Jose Saramago Literary Award, delivered every two years for the best novel written in all portuguese-speaking countries. ‘Blank Gaze’ was selected by Financial Times as one of their best books of 2007. In the USA, it was part of ‘Discover Great new writer’ selection by Barnes & Noble. In Portugal, it was selected by Expresso as one of their 10 best books of the decade. Peixoto’s first fiction, ‘Morreste-me’ (published in the UK as ‘You died on me’, Warwick Review, 2010) was selected by Visão as one of their 10 best books of the first decade of the twenty-first century. His poetry collection ‘A Criança em Ruínas’ was awarded by the Sociedade Portuguesa de Autores (Portuguese Authors Society) as the best poetry book publish in Portugal in the previous year. In 2003, JLP wrote the short-story collection ‘Antidote’ in a joint project with the heavy metal band Moonspell, which reached new readers all around the world. In 2007, his novel ‘Cemitério de Pianos’ (published as ‘The Piano Cemetery’ in the UK) won the Calamo Award for the best translated novel published in Spain. In 2008, he received the Daniel Faria Poetry Award. In 2010, Peixoto published the novel ‘Livro’, which won the literary award Libro d’Europa in Italy and was short-listed in the Femina Award (France). In 2012, Peixoto published ‘Dentro do Segredo, Uma Viagem na Coreia do Norte’ (‘Inside the Secret, A journey in North Korea’) his first work of non-fiction. Peixoto’s poetry and short-stories have appeared  in a great number of anthologies on dozens of languages. All his novels have been internationally acclaimed and so, far, have been translated in 20 languages. To Purchase

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Hugo dos Santos is a Luso-American writer and translator. A Child in Ruins, his translation of the collected poems of José Luís Peixoto, was published by Writ Large Press. He is a Disquiet International fellow and his work has appeared in various publications in the U.S. and Europe, including upstreet, DMQ Review, Queen Mob’s Tea House, theEEEL by tNY.Press, Hinchas de Poesia, and elsewhere. He is the author of ironbound – a blog. More at hugodossantos.com.

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when it was time to set the table, we were five:
my father, my mother, my sisters
and me. then, my older sister
married. then, my younger sister
married. then, my father died. today,
when it is time to set the table, we are five,
except my older sister who is
at her home, except my younger
sister who is at her home, except my
father, except my widowed mother. each one
is an empty place at this table where
i eat alone. but they will always be here.
at the time to set the table, we will always be five.
as long as one of us is alive, we will always
be five. –  José Luís Peixoto

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