Thu, 26 April 2018
This poem by was translated ay at a PTC workshop run by our founder Sarah Maguire. In her translation notes, she ponders the origins of rhubarb as the distinctive plant gets referenced in the third line of the poem:
'We Brits tend to think of rhubarb as being a very distinctive British - especially Yorkshire - plant and so we were pleased to come across it the very different context of a poem by a Kurdish poet written when he was living in Moscow. (In fact, the plant originated in China and was brought to Britain during the fourteenth century via the Silk Route and was first known as 'Turkish Rhubarb'.)
This small poem is, of course, a wry reflection on the ancient culture of the Kurds who, although swindled and pushed from pillar to post for centuries, have not (yet) been accepted as a nation.'
If you enjoy this podcast and would like to support the Poetry Translation Centre please visit poetrytranslation.org/support-us.