An unusual poet from the Baroque period meets 21st century poet-translators in this exceptional book. Catharina Regina von Greiffenberg's intense devotional poems are matched with innovative and moving new English versions from Canadians Joanne Epp, Sally Ito, and Sarah Klassen. This is astonishing Metaphysical poetry: original, provocative, reverent.
The translators have chosen 65 poems from 300 in Greiffenberg's best-known work, Geistliche Sonette, Lieder und Gedichte. The sonnets in Wonder-Work are presented in both German and English.
About the authors
Born and raised in Saskatchewan, Joanne Epp spent several years in Ontario and now makes her home in Winnipeg with her husband and two sons. Currently she serves as assistant organist at St. Margaret's Anglican Church. Her poetry has appeared in numerous journals including The New Quarterly, The Antigonish Review, CV2, The Light Ekphrastic, and others.Eigenheim is her first full-length poetry collection.
Born in Manitoba’s Interlake, Sarah Klassen learned at an early age to appreciate both birdsong and nature’s silence. An accomplished poet and fiction writer, she has won the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award (Journey to Yalta), the High Plains Award for Fiction (A Feast of Longing), the Canadian Authors Association Award for Poetry (A Curious Beatitude), and the National Magazine Gold Award for Poetry. Her work has been nominated for the McNally Robinson Book of the Year Award, the Margaret Laurence Award for Fiction, and the Aqua Lansdowne Prize for Poetry. The Witternbergs is her first novel. Klassen lives in Winnipeg.
Sally Ito was born in Taber, Alberta and grew up in Edmonton and the Northwest Territories. She studied at the University of British Columbia and the University of Alberta, and travelled on scholarship to Japan, where she translated Japanese poetry. Her first book of poems, Frogs in the Rain Barrel (Nightwood, 1995) was runner-up for the Milton Acorn People's Poetry Award. Her second book, Floating Shore (Mercury Press), won the Writers Guild of Alberta Book Award for short fiction, and was shortlisted for the Danuta Gleed Literary Prize and the City of Edmonton Book Prize. Her work has appeared in numerous periodicals such as Grain, Matrix and the Capilano Review and in the anthologies Breathing Fire: Canada's New Poets and Poets 88. Ito lives in Edmonton with her husband and son.
Excerpt: Wonder-Work: Selected Sonnets of Catharina Regina von Greiffenberg (original author Catharina Regina Greiffenberg; translated by Joanne Epp, Sarah Klassen & Sally Ito)
Not only in distress and death, but in my very mouth my beloved gives himself to me in sweetness. His blood, inflamed by love, shall quiet my heart’s heat. I kiss and eat him out of love, here in my throat. He could not be more closely wed with me.