Congratulations on a truly excellent issue of The Chimaera. As David Landrum says in his letter, very few literary e-zines offer such abundance of works of high quality. This may only be Issue II, but I would say that The Chimaera is up there with The Cortland Review in terms of its format, content and wide scope. What I find especially attractive about this issue, aside from the embedded audio files, is the inclusion of most of the translated texts in their original version. I have particularly enjoyed Andrew Frisardi’s translations from Franco Loi´s meneghino, Rhina Espaillat’s wonderful rendition of Miguel Hernández (even the title itself, “Like a bull, born to sorrow”, is a very accomplished translation), and Adam Elgar’s version of Foscolo’s sonnet “Alla sera”. I have fond memories of this poem from my days at university in Italy, and Adam Elgar’s translation evoked those memories before I re-read the original.
This is just a note in praise of Debjani Chatterjee’s translations and notes. They were both informative and inspiring. It’s rare to find a feature which offers both poems to appreciate and technical plunder for that magpie, the writer! Thank you to the authors and editors.
McG. and Dundee
I crave the courtesy of your columns in order to speak
Regarding the letter of Mr “Adolphus McTweak”
(As unlikely a cognomen as I can imagine, be it said,
As any in the Dundee phone book, A to Z).
The writer presumes my name to be a pseudonym
On grounds flimsy to me, though apparently not to him.
I am not in said phone book, thus far he is quite right,
Thanks to the people who, often late at night,
Used to ring me up in an alcoholic stupor to say
Something rude about the Queen or the silvery Tay.
As for the canary register and the goldfish keeper list,
“McTweak” doubtless knows fine that such do not exist.
I am, Sirs, very cordially,
William McGonagall III