Letter from the Editor

July 25, 2013 in Uncategorized by rkennedy


Each issue of Alchemy has its own particularities, its own sense of aesthetics and identity. As Editor in Chief for the year 2012-2013, I have had the opportunity to oversee submissions for Issues 3, 4 and 5, and it has been exciting to watch the journal grow during this period. The last issue was especially impressive in its chronological range, with work spanning several centuries. Issue 4 of Alchemy is the most geographically and linguistically diverse yet.

From the Middle East we have Nicole Fares’ translation of contemporary Lebanese novelist Sahar Mandour’s third novel, titled 32, as well as Nilufar Karimi’s innovative mash-up translations of old Rumi poems. Max Thompson presents us with a sample of Russian lyric poetry, elegantly managing the risky task of maintaining the rhyme scheme in his translations. And continuing with our exploration of the Raramuri language, Cathiana Sylne delights us with another adaptation of a legend from this Native American people, renowned for their long distance running ability.

And rounding up our collaborators for Issue 4 we have Wawan Eko Yulianto’s translations from the award winning Indonesian poet Joko Pinurbo, whose work has been seldom translated into English. We also have EP Allan’s translations from Yosa Buson, one of the major poets from the Edo Era in Japan, as well as EJ Koh’s translations from Kim Myung Won, a poet and professor of Korean Literature at Daejun University in Seoul, South Korea.

I would like to extend personal thanks to Rae Armantrout, with whom I have had the opportunity to work closely on my ongoing translation of her Pulitzer Prize-winning book Versed into Spanish. I am honored to be able to share some of that work with our readers at Alchemy.

I would also like to take a brief moment to acknowledge all the hard work from Alchemy’s engine, our Editorial Staff: Bella, Monica, Adrianna, Aimly, Jacob, and especially Mika, our web-designer and all around problem solver. This journal would not be possible without the commitment and perseverance of the Alchemy team.

Welcome to Issue 4.

Jose Antonio Villarán, Editor