In early November 2018 three German poets of different generations and sensibilities, Carolin Callies, Dorina Heller and Hans Thill, travelled to Granada to meet with poets Juan Carlos Friebe, Trinidad Gan and José Carlos Rosales. After the joint reading on 6 November at the Centro Federico García Lorca, the Granada poets returned to Heidelberg for two public readings on 14 and 15 December at the Heidelberg City Library and the Goethe Institute Mannheim. The project as a whole was called Expedition Poetry and consisted of a formidable experience of poetic translation which now culminates in the publication of a book.
In those intense sessions in November 2018, the six poets worked together in the Sala Talleres of the Centro Federico García Lorca. Each poet had brought ten poems of his or her own, transposed into the other language word-by-word, with the aim that by the end of the project literary translations of all of them would have been generated. A translator and interpreter, Tamara Cortés, helped the participants to communicate and discuss with each other, until they managed to translate the poems written in German into Spanish and vice versa, in beautiful literary versions.
The poets soon got to grips with the way of how the project worked: they began by reciting the poems they all brought and telling how their poems came about and what personal experiences were associated with their creation. It didn’t take them long to become familiar with each other and to establish complicities. Aided by Tamara Cortés, they shared and discussed the findings of their respective versions. The result was a lasting friendship and a set of sixty translated poems that are now, at last, published in electronic format.
The book is called Expedition Poetry, is available for free in epub, pdf and mobi (prc) format and can be downloaded here (Ziskat link).
It contains, in a bilingual edition, all the poems that Carolin Callies, Juan Carlos Friebe, Trinidad Gan, Dorina Heller, José Carlos Rosales and Hans Thill contributed to the project.
Expedition Poetry was organised by Heidelberg and Granada UNESCO Cities of Literature, in cooperation with the Centro Federico García Lorca and the Goethe-Institut Mannheim. The e-book was produced by Prague UNESCO City of Literature.