Tela de Sevoya
The narrator of Tela de sevoya travels to Bulgaria, searching for traces of her Sephardic heritage. Her journey becomes an autobiographical and imagined exploration of childhood, diaspora, and the possibilities of her family language: Ladino or Judeo-Spanish, the living tongue spoken by descendants of the Jews expelled from Spain in 1492. Memoir, poetry, storytelling, songs, and dreams are interwoven in this visionary text—this tela or cloth that brings the past to life, if only for a moment, and weaves a powerful immediacy into the present.
About The Authors
Myriam Moscona is from Mexico, of Bulgarian Sephardic descent. She is the author of nine books, from Ultimo jardín (1983) to De par en par (2009). Two of her published books are outside the realm of poetry, yet remain connected to poetry: De frente y de perfil (literary portraits of 75 Mexican poets) and De par en par, which explores the phenomenon of poetry beyond its traditional construction. When Negro marfil was conceived, Moscona focused on the use of visual materials (inks, pastels, graphite and acrylics), which led her to explore alternate means of expression. In this way she came to visual poetry: drawn in through the side doors of writing. Moscona has received numerous awards, including the Premio de Poesía Aguascalientes and the Premio Nacional de Traducción; she is a grantee of the Sistema Nacional de Creadores de Arte, and she was awarded a grant from the Guggenheim Foundation.
Antena is a language justice and language experimentation collaborative founded in 2010 by Jen Hofer and John Pluecker, both of whom are writers, artists, literary translators, bookmakers and activist interpreters.
Jen Hofer is a Los Angeles-based poet, translator, social justice interpreter, teacher, knitter, book-maker, public letter-writer, urban cyclist, and co-founder of the language justice and literary activism collaborative Antena. Her translation of Negro marfil by Mexican poet Myriam Moscona, published as Ivory Black by Les Figues Press in 2011, won the 2012 Harold Morton Landon Translation Award from the Academy of American Poets and the 2012 PEN Award for Poetry in Translation.
Her other translations include the homemade chapbook En las maravillas/In Wonder (Libros Antena/Antena Books, 2012); sexoPUROsexoVELOZ and Septiembre, a translation from Dolores Dorantes by Dolores Dorantes (Counterpath Press and Kenning Editions, 2008); lip wolf, a translation of lobo de labioby Laura Solórzano (Action Books, 2007); and Sin puertas visibles: An Anthology of Contemporary Poetry by Mexican Women (Ediciones Sin Nombre and University of Pittsburgh Press, 2003).
Her most recent books are the handmade chapbook Lead & Tether (Dusie Kollektiv, 2011); a series of anti-war-manifesto poems titled one (Palm Press, 2009); and The Route, a collaboration with Patrick Durgin (Atelos, 2008). She has poems, essays and translations forthcoming from Dusie Books, Insert Press, Kenning Editions, and Litmus Press. She teaches in the MFA Writing Program at CalArts and the Graduate Writing Program at Otis College of Art & Design, and works nationally and locally as a social justice interpreter through Antena. Most recently she has been hand-sewing quilted poems; her installation “Uncovering: A Quilted Poem Made from Donated and Foraged Materials from Wendover, Utah” is currently on view at the CLUI.
John Pluecker is a writer, interpreter, translator and co-founder of the language justice and literary experimentation collaborative Antena. His work is informed by experimental poetics, radical aesthetics and cross-border cultural production.
His texts have appeared in journals in the U.S. and Mexico, including The Volta, Mandorla, Aufgabe, eleven eleven, Third Text, Animal Shelter, HTMLGiant and Fence. He has translated numerous books from the Spanish, including Antígona González (Les Figues Press, Forthcoming), Tijuana Dreaming: Life and Art at the Global Border (Duke University Press, 2012) and Feminism: Transmissions and Retransmissions (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011). His most recent chapbooks are Killing Current (Mouthfeel Press, 2012), Ioyaiene (Fresh Arts, 2014) and An Accompanying Text (She Works Flexible, 2015). His book of poetry and image, Ford Over, is forthcoming in 2016 from Noemi Press.