Poet Kirmen Uribe was born in Ondarroa, a fishing village in Spain’s Basque country. He received an undergraduate degree in Basque philology from the University of the Basque Country.
His first collection of poetry, Bitartean heldu eskutik (2001), won Spain’s Premio de la Critica. Elizabeth Macklin’s English translation, Meanwhile Take My Hand (2007), was a finalist for the 2008 PEN Award for Poetry in Translation. Uribe’s imagery is rooted in his Basque homeland, with themes ranging from romantic love to technology, history to travel. A reviewer for the Los Angeles Times Book Review praised the translation, noting, “The poems are each a beacon of light and memory, surrounded by conflict, explosion and interruption.”
In addition to his poetry, Uribe has published essays, fiction, comics, and children’s literature. He has worked as a translator, scriptwriter, instructor, and columnist for the Basque-language daily newspaper Berria. His piece for theater, Ekidazu, has been produced by the groups Kukubiltxo and Oskorri. Uribe collaborated with poet-translator Elizabeth Macklin, singer-songwriter Mikel Urdangarin, and musicians Bingen Mendizabal and Rafa Rueda on a multimedia project integrating poetry, prose, video, music, and oral history, which was documented in the CD-books Bar Puerto (2001) and Zaharregia, txikiegia agian (2003).