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Hear Paul Legault’s Translations of Emily Dickinson
Check out this installment of the Huffington Post Reading Series, in which:
Paul Legault translated Emily Dickinson’s poems into what he calls “basic English,” but I’d classify them as concise snippets of 21st century American poetry. These translations convey Dickinson’s expressions, but do so using contemporary language. When we think of translation, we think mostly of translation done between two distinct languages. To decipher Dickinson’s language, the abstracted jargon of her day, requires a skill that is mostly intuitive, partly exploratory, and wholly creative. That’s what Legault does. He recreates 1,789 poems by Emily Dickinson. And by doing so, he writes 1,789 poems by Paul Legault.