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Michel Deguy; Wilson Baldridge, trans.

Wesleyan Poetry Series

2005 • 268 pp. 5 1/2 x 8 1/2"
Poetry / Literary Criticism - French

$21.95 Paperback, 978-0-8195-6748-2
$50.00 Hardcover, 978-0-8195-6747-5

(Hardcover is un-jacketed.
Cover illustration is for paperback edition only)

Bilingual French-English ed.

A widely acclaimed collection by one of France’s leading poets and thinkers. Bilingual—first English translation.

Hailed as one of France’s most influential living poets, Michel Deguy has remained largely inaccessible to English-language readers. Recumbents is the first English translation of the most critically-acclaimed volume of this poet’s work. The word recumbents refers to funereal sculptures (gisants), reclining lovers, and the literal imprint of those and other figures on the page. The collection includes a poem for the dead, “Procession,” written by Deguy in the wake of his father’s suicide, and poems dedicated to all phases of Eros. These are interwoven with passages on rhetoric or what Deguy calls poetic reason. This bilingual edition also includes a meditation on Deguy’s work by deconstructionism’s foundational thinker, Jacques Derrida.

Click here for TABLE OF CONTENTS

Reviews / Endorsements

“Possibly the single most outstanding volume by Deguy to date—in Recumbents he is working at the top of his poetic powers.” —Pierre Joris, author of A Nomad Poetics

“How gratifying to read Baldridge’s translation of Michel Deguy’s Gisants! One could not have hoped for a more sure-footed, attentive, and refined rendering of Deguy’s exacting poetry.”Elisabeth Cardonne-Arlyck,Professor of French, Vassar College

From the Book:

The minuscule and quasi subliminal loss of time, which is a loss of time as where the sink in the stream is a spring, where time gets lost is a delight—when I rise from a chair, called by the doorbell, and during this lapse—twenty, forty seconds?—on command, delivered from the task of describing, from the constraint of inventing a laborious ford, but devoted to nothing the while, I think only of opening…
“Where Time Gets Lost”


Winner of the PEN Award for Poetry in Translation (2006)
Winner of the MLA Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for Translation of a Literary Work (2006)

Author Photo

MICHEL DEGUY is Emeritus Professor of French Literature at the Université de Paris VIII (Saint Denis). He has been awarded two of the most important French poetry awards, the Prix Mallarmé and Le Grand Prix National de Poésie. WILSON BALDRIDGE, a widely published translator, is Associate Professor of French at Wichita State University. JACQUES DERRIDA is a celebrated French philosopher and one of the most influential thinkers of the late 20th century.

Mon, 18 Jun 2018 11:52:32 -0500