Hymns & Qualms: New and Selected Poems and Translations (Hardcover)
Inspired, border-crossing work by a major American poet and translator
Hymns & Qualms brings together MacArthur Fellow Peter Cole's acclaimed poetry and translations, weaving them into a helical whole. Praised for his prosodic mastery and keen moral intelligence (American Poets), and for the rigor, vigor, joy, and wit of his poetry (The Paris Review), Cole has created a vital, unclassifiable body of work that plumbs centuries of wisdom while paying sharp attention to the textures and tensions of the present. He is, Harold Bloom writes, a matchless translator and one of the handful of authentic poets in his own American generation. Hymns & Qualms is a majestic work, a chronicle of the imaginative life of a profoundly spiritual consciousness.
Cole is a maker of poems and worlds. From his earliest registrations of the Jerusalem landscape's stark power to electric renderings of mystical medieval Hebrew hymns; from his kabbalistically inspired recent poems to sensuous versions of masterworks of Muslim Spain; and from his provocative presentation of contemporary poetry from Palestine and Israel to his own dazzling reckonings with politics, beauty, and the double-edged dynamic of influence, Cole offers a ramifying vision of connectedness. In the process, he defies traditional distinctions between new and old, familiar and foreign, translation and original as though, in his own words, living itself were an endless translation.
About the Author
Peter Cole was born in Paterson, New Jersey, in 1957. He has published several books of poems and many volumes of translations from Hebrew and Arabic, both medieval and modern. He has received numerous honors for his work, including a Guggenheim Fellowship and an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature, and in 2007 he was named a MacArthur Fellow. He divides his time between Jerusalem and New Haven.