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Translated from the French by Hoyt Rogers
Published: Sat Apr 15 1995
Art by Jin Suk
Summer Again

Translated from the French by Hoyt Rogers

I walk on in the snow. I’ve closed
My eyes, but the light knows how to breach
My porous lids. And I perceive
That in my words it’s still the snow
That eddies, thickens, shears apart.

Snow,
Letter we find again and unfold:
And the ink has paled and the bleached-out marks
Betray an awkwardness of mind
Which makes their lucid shadows just a muddle.

And we try to read, we can’t retrieve from memory
Who’s taking such an interest in ourselves—unless
It’s summer again; unless we see the leaves
Behind the snowflakes, and the heat
Rising from the absent ground like mist.

 

Yves Bonnefoy (1923–2016) is often acclaimed as one of France’s greatest poets. He published ten major collections of verse, several books of tales, and numerous studies of literature and art, and was a celebrated translator of Shakespeare, Yeats, Keats, and Leopardi. His work has been translated into scores of languages, and he earned many honors, including the European Prize for Poetry (2006) and the Kafka Prize (2007). He succeeded Roland Barthes in the Chair of Comparative Poetics at the Collège de France.

Hoyt Rogers has published a poetry collection, Witnesses, and a volume of criticism, The Poetics of Inconstancy. His fiction, poetry, and essays have appeared in a wide variety of periodicals and anthologies. His translations of Jorge Luis Borges appeared in the Viking-Penguin edition. In 2013, Yale published his anthology of poems and journal entries by André du Bouchet, prepared in collaboration with Paul Auster. He has translated three books by Yves Bonnefoy: _The Curved Planks _(Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Second Simplicity (Yale University Press), and The Digamma (Seagull Books). Two more works by Bonnefoy, Together Still and Rome 1630, are forthcoming at Seagull. He translates from the French, German, Italian, and Spanish. (2016)

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Yves Bonnefoy (1923–2016) is often acclaimed as one of France’s greatest poets. He published ten major collections of verse, several books of tales, and numerous studies of literature and art, and was a celebrated translator of Shakespeare, Yeats, Keats, and Leopardi. His work has been translated into scores of languages, and he earned many honors, including the European Prize for Poetry (2006) and the Kafka Prize (2007). He succeeded Roland Barthes in the Chair of Comparative Poetics at the Collège de France.

Hoyt Rogers’s forthcoming works include Sailing to Noon, the first novel in The Caribbean Trilogy (with Artemisia Vento). He is the author of the poetry collection Witnesses and book of criticism The Poetics of Inconstancy. His poems, stories, and essays have appeared in New England Review, The Antioch Review, AGNI, The Fortnightly Review, and dozens of other publications. Rogers also translates from French, German, Italian, and Spanish. He has translated four books by Yves Bonnefoy, most recently Rome, 1630 (Seagull Books, 2020), which won the French American Foundation’s Translation Prize. He translated and edited, with Paul Auster, an anthology of poems and journal entries by André du Bouchet, Openwork (Yale University Press, 2013); and with Eric Fishman, he translated du Bouchet’s Outside (Bitter Oleander Press, 2020). (updated 10/2021)​​​​​​
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