Let Us Believe in the Beginning of the Cold Season

Poetry by Forough Farrokhzad

Translated from the Persian by Elizabeth T. Gray, Jr.

In the years since her tragic death in a car accident at age thirty-two in 1967, Forough Farrokhzad has become a poet as influential as Lorca or Akhmatova, celebrated as a feminist trailblazer of Iranian literature and as an iconoclastic figure of contemporary world literature. As Mehdi Jami writes in the Guardian, “In every culture you have cultural icons, like Shakespeare in Britain. Farrokhzad was like that for contemporary Iran, someone who formed the identity of our contemporariness.…
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Novel on Yellow Paper

I am a forward-thinking girl, and don’t stay where I am. ‘Left right, be bright.’ Pompey Casmilus, Stevie Smith’s loquacious alter ego, works as a secretary and writes down on yellow office paper this wickedly amusing novel. “Dear Reader,” she addresses us politely in the whirlwind of her opinions on death, sex, anti-Semitism, art, Greek tragedy, friendship, marriage, Nazism, gossip, and the suburbs. But most of all Pompey talks about love.…
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Chasing Homer

Fiction by László Krasznahorkai

Translated from the Hungarian by John Batki

Art by Max Neumann Music by Szilveszter Miklós In this chase thriller, a hunted being escapes certain death at breakneck speed—careening through Europe, heading blindly South. Faster and faster, escaping the assassins, our protagonist flies forward, blending into crowds, adjusting to terrains, hopping on and off ferries, always desperately trying to stay a step ahead: I’m a prisoner of the instant, an I rush into this instant, an instant that has no continuation, just as it has no earlier version, and I have to tell myself—if I had the time to think about this between two instants—that I have no need for either past or future because neither one exists.…
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His Name Was Death

Fiction by Rafael Bernal

Translated from the Spanish by Kit Schluter

With a contribution by Yuri Herrera

Never before in English, this legendary precursor to ecofiction turns the coming insect apocalypse on its head. A bitter drunk forsakes civilization and takes to the Mexican jungle, trapping animals, selling their pelts to buy liquor for colossal benders, and slowly rotting away in his fetid hut. His neighbors, a local Chiapas tribe, however, see something more in him than he does himself (dubbing him Wise Owl). When he falls deathly ill, a shaman named Black Ant saves his life—and, almost by chance, in driving out his fever, she exorcises the demon of alcoholism as well.…
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Cremation

Fiction by Rafael Chirbes

Translated by Valerie Miles

The booming post-Franco years have left everything up for grabs along a stretch of the Mediterranean coastline of Spain: real-estate developers scramble to transform the once pastoral landscape into resorts, nightclubs, and beachfront properties with lavish pools. Cremation opens with the death of Matías, a paterfamilias who had rejected all of these changes and whose passing sets off a chain reaction, uncovering guilts and resentments that had been buried for years and leading those closest to him to question the paths they’ve chosen.…
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Refractive Africa

Poetry by Will Alexander

“The poet is endemic with life itself,” Will Alexander once said, and in this searing pas de trois, Refractive Africa: Ballet of the Forgotten, he has exemplified this vital candescence with a transpersonal amplification worthy of the Cambrian explosion. “This being the ballet of the forgotten,” he writes as diasporic witness, “of refracted boundary points as venom.” The volume’s opening poem pays homage to the innovative Nigerian-Yoruban author Amos Tutuola; it ends with an encomium to the modernist Malagasy poet Jean-Joseph Rabearivelo—two writers whose luminous art suffered “colonial wrath through refraction.…
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Garden Physic

Poetry by Sylvia Legris

With illustrations, photographs, and maps Sylvia Legris’s Garden Physic is a paean to the pleasures and delights of one of the world’s most cherished pastimes: Gardening! “At the center of the garden the heart,” she writes, “Red as any rose. Pulsing / balloon vine. Love in a puff.” As if composed out of a botanical glossolalia of her own invention, Legris’s poems map the garden as body and the body as garden—her words at home in the phytological and anatomical—like birds in a nest.…
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Woolgathering

Literature by Patti Smith

With a new afterword and photographs by the author The National Book Award–winner Patti Smith updates her treasure box of a childhood memoir about “clear unspeakable joy” and “just the wish to know” with a radiant new afterword, written during the pandemic and reflecting on current times. This expanded paperback edition also includes new photographs by the author. A great book about becoming an artist, Woolgathering tells of a child finding herself as she learns the noble vocation of woolgathering, “a worthy calling that seemed a good job for me.…
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H of H Playbook

Literature by Anne Carson

Illustrated by Anne Carson H of H Playbook is an explosion of thought, in drawings and language, about a Greek tragedy called Herakles by the 5th-century BC poet Euripides. In myth Herakles is an embodiment of manly violence who returns home after years of making war on enemies and monsters (his famous “Labors of Herakles”) to find he cannot adapt himself to a life of peacetime domesticity. He goes berserk and murders his whole family.…
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An Inventory of Losses

Fiction by Judith Schalansky

Translated by Jackie Smith

Named a best book of 2021 by The Wall Street Journal: “Disappearance may be a forlorn theme, but it has rarely been granted such reverent contemplation, or been made to feel so powerfully tangible.” Each disparate object described in this book—a Caspar David Friedrich painting, a species of tiger, a villa in Rome, a Greek love poem, an island in the Pacific—shares a common fate: it no longer exists, except as the dead end of a paper trail.…
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