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Ventures Poet: Manuel Forcano

Posted by Arc, 11th October 2013

Continuing to introduce the poets participating in the Ventures Tour we're chatting with Catalan Manuel Forcano who begins hhis visit in Hebden Bridge on Monday 14 October

What is it you're looking forward to about the tour? And what do you hope to gain from the experience?

It is going to be my first time reading poetry in front of an audience in England. I have done that before in other countries such as Turkey, Italy, Poland or Germany, and each time it was different. Now I will discover a new audience and I think it is going to be very interesting to see how they welcome my verses or not.

What do you enjoy about reading to an audience?

I especially enjoy transmitting the emotions of every poem; or at least, I try to. It is sometimes quite difficult to get across what I want to say and for the audience to process it correctly. We are talking about feelings and emotions in selected words and metaphors that are in a different language, so my poems must be, first translated, second understood, and third felt inside and to move or touch the audience. The journey from my words in Catalan to the listeners' sensitivity can sometimes be quite a long one.

What were the origins of your selection for Six Catalan Poets?

This question is not for me, but for the anthologist and the translator of the poems. Suddenly one day I was informed that I would be chosen as one of the six poets for this anthology in English. I was very glad to be selected, because my works have been translated into other 'exotic' such as Hebrew, Arabic, Bask, Polish, Spanish, Turkish, Italian and German, but never before into English or French.

What is important about the poems for you?

Poems are for me small museums against oblivion: feelings, memories, pleasures and sadness of my private life are exposed on paper as paintings on a wall. I look at them (read them) and I can reconstruct the moments of my past that I want to keep alive in my memory, in my sentimental biography.

What is it about your work that will benefit from reading live?

Nothing specially. In fact, I always thought that my poetry is very private and intimate, to be read in silence, at home, in a twilight room. It is an exercise to recover some light from the past, always dark and far away from our present days. Reading my poems live is always a hard and dangerous exercise of impudence, to force a nocturnal creature to fly during daylight.

What do you hope your audience will gain from the experience?

I hope my audience will understand and enjoy the pleasure of sharing my poetic works with them: to write my feelings in a way that they could be their own. It is a generous act and I look forward to it.

All Manuel's reading dates are on the events page