The Elements of Latin America, a collection of poetry by Abhay K, an Indian poet-diplomat, has been turned into Italian by Angela D’Ambra and published by Edizioni Efesto in Rome.
The 108 poems, grouped alphabetically from A to Z, offer a lyrical image of Latin America, its diverse locales, monuments, people, flora and wildlife, festivals, food, landscapes, and myths.
“Latin America’s Alphabets are warm and inviting. Abhay K has an excellent sense of lineation, understatement, memorable, concrete imagery, and text organization.
I’m particularly affected by how he uses location elements discreetly, such as Tenochtitlan’s dream vision (which was built on a dream vision) or the Borgesian paradox of seeking Borges and discovering mirror reflections of the self. I adore how this abecedarian swings between short and more prominent poetry, constantly renewing our rhythms. Also, seeing so many familiar locations via his eyes gives me such a personal joy. “It is a creative and fascinating work that breaks the frontiers of time and place, which seems so important now in this age of nationalist entrenchment and paranoia,” remarked Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Forrest Gander.
Victor Rodriguez Nunez, a Latin American poet, writes: “Latin Americans owe a debt of gratitude to Indian poet Abhay K for this seminal work. The Elements of Latin America is a love song that honors us as a civilization and culture, with knowledge and compassion, calculation and emotion.”
An introduction by Italian novelist David Tozzo appears in the Italian edition of the book.
Abhay K is the director of The Bloomsbury Book of Great Indian Love Poems, CAPITALS, The Bloomsbury Anthology of Great Indian Poems, and New Brazilian Poems, and the author of 10 poetry volumes, the most recent of which is The Magic of Madagascar.
His poems have appeared in literary magazines such as Poetry Salzburg Review and Asian Literary Review. In addition, his anthem, “Earth Anthem,” has been translated into more than 120 languages. In 2013, he was awarded the SAARC Literary Award, and in 2018, he was asked to record his poetry in the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.