An English-Italian bilingual collection of love poems, Text Me expresses through language and metaphor the many ways to say “I love you.” Calabrò’s poems often evolve from the experiences of the body: from sensual impressions, “Your cheek on my weary shoulder / the day pales, your lips pale / up, up, one more wing-beat / till we run out of oxygen”; to image, “In cold blood / the ice contrail of a Phantom jet /stabs the blue. / Like a blade in honey / you plunge your gaze into my heart”; to memory , “We met and I kissed you / already consumed by the need to betray you.” Although rooted in Calabrò's Mediterranean, these poems have a universality which give voice to our common burden of love, sorrow and guilt.
Corrado Calabrò, born in Reggio Calabria, completed his first book when he was twenty and has since published seventeen more collections. HIs poems have been translated into more than a dozen languages and they have been collected in a theatre recital that toured extensively throughout Italy, Europe, Australia, and South America. His novel, Ricorda di dimenticarla, a finalist for the Strega Prize, was the basis for the 2006 movie Il mercante di pietre, (The Stone Merchant). In 2011 Calabrò was awarded The Cetonaverde Prize for career achievement.
About the translator Genni Gunn is a writer, musician and translator. Born in Trieste, Italy, she came to Canada when she was eleven. She has published nine books: three novels – Solitaria, Tracing Irisand Thrice Upon a Time, two short story collections – Hungersand On The Road, two poetry collections – Faceless andMating in Captivity, and translated from the Italian two collections of poems. Two of her books have also been translated into Italian. Her work has been shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, the John Glassco Translation Award and the Gerald Lampert Award, and her novel Tracing Iris is being made into a feature film. Her opera Alternate Visions premiered in Montreal in 2007 and was projected in a simulcast at The Western Front in Vancouver. Before she turned to writing full-time, Genni toured Canada extensively with a variety of bands (bass guitar, piano and vocals). Since then, she has performed at hundreds of readings and writers’ festivals. She lives in Vancouver, where she teaches half-time at Kwantlen Polytechnic University.
In the velvet of night, vision rescues the poet and opens psychic scenarios in which the re-established contact with the forces of nature enables him to penetrate the mystery of life and the universe; penetrate but not decipher. The women he sometimes names in his poems (Jessica, Michelle, etc.), are nothing but masks of love, the true one, who doggedly pursues Calabró, who has the ability to surprise him and who flows inexhaustible in his arteries. — Fabia Baldi