Wednesday, December 20, 2017


Four photographs
(Click on images to enlarge)


Translations from the Italian
Four poems from A Form of Love (unpublished, 2017) by Pierre Lepori


my love where are you going?
you who always leave when I turn my back
you who leave and disappear
but your breath on my neck
is not a dream
this is the disciplined life
the ardor
the little of me that remains
when I look at you I do not see you
when you look at me you do not see me
my love that has a simple name
in the rise and fall of the hours


my lover has had enough
and would like to turn the glove[1] around
throw the seams and the wounds of life in my face
I turn my back on my love
I put up a wall and act like I don’t care
and my lover now returns docile in my lap
chooses to melt in the fragile skin of my elbow
embraces me
and consoles me


“It is not true that the words…” [2]
I wanted to tell you this
my love!

but life in itself
is not enough either
it is vainly constructed
withholding all the facts
it trembles
as the stone
that bounces twice
on the surface of the water
and then disappears


my lover is tough
in the yellow city light in the rain
my lover fakes indifference and crosses his legs
he doesn’t even know that I’m watching him
and looking at him I create him
with a tiny crease
almost a cut
above the eye
and the side-swept bangs

then suddenly the words are missing
and his face evaporates
the hands slip away


Pierre Lepori was born in Lugano in 1968, studied in Siena and Bern, and is now based in Lausanne. He is a writer and translator, and an arts correspondent for the Italian-language Swiss public radio network. In 2015 he founded the theatre company TT3. He has trans­lated French literature into Italian, including authors Monique Laederach and Gustave Roud. His literary works include: Qualunque sia il nome (Whatever the Name, 2003, translated into English by Peter Valente, 2017) Vento (Wind, 2004), Grisù (2006) and Sessualità (Sexuality, 2011). Sessualità was launched simultaneously in three languages: Italian, French and German; the author did his own translation from Italian to French, and the German translator based her version on the two ‘originals’. In addition, there is a trilingual version that switches between all three languages, depending on which character is speaking.

Peter Valente is the author of A Boy Asleep Under the Sun: Versions of Sandro Penna  (Punctum Books, 2014)which was nominated for a Lambda award, The Artaud Variations (Spuyten Duyvil, 2014), Let the Games Begin: Five Roman Writers (Talisman House, 2015), two books of photography, Blue (Spuyten Duyvil) and Street Level (Spuyten Duyvil, 2016), two translations from the Italian, Blackout by Nanni Balestrini (Commune Editions, 2017) and Whatever the Name by Pierre Lepori (Spuyten Duyvil, 2017), Two Novellas: Parthenogenesis & Plague in the Imperial City (Spuyten Duyvil, 2017), a collaboration with Kevin Killian, Ekstasis (blazeVOX, 2017) and the chapbook, Forge of Words a Forest (Jensen Daniels, 1998). He is the co-translator of the chapbook, Selected Late Letters of Antonin Artaud, 1945-1947 (Portable Press at Yo-Yo Labs, 2014), and has translated the work of Gérard de Nerval, Cesare Viviani, and Pier Paolo Pasolini, as well as numerous Ancient Greek and Latin authors. He is also presently at work on a book for Semiotext(e). In 2010, he turned to filmmaking and has completed 60 shorts to date, 24 of which were screened at Anthology Film Archives. 

[1] This suggests the line “sentences are like gloves” from Shakespeare, The Twelfth Night (III, 12)
[2] “it is not true that the words create facts.” from Pierre Bourdieu’s Language and Symbolic Power

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