A requiem for all the losses of the living throughout history, seeking to bridge the centuries by echoing another poem created in the tenth century by an Armenian mystic monk, Grikor Narekatsi. Unsurprisingly, it also touches upon the theme of the Armenian Genocide as a vivid example of loss for mankind as a whole. And yet Requiem is not simply an outpouring of tragedy and grief: throughout, there is a sense of resilience, a desire for life and faith, and a joyous optimism that goes far beyond the boundaries of Davoyan's native Armenia.
Requiem is the first publication in English of one of the most extraordinary long poems published in Armenia in the last century. Written over fifty years ago, and originally blocked from publication in Armenia for five years by the Soviet regime, Requiem now appears in the author's revised and shortened version, offering the English-language reader an opportunity of encountering this monumental yet highly personal work by Armenia's best-known and most highly-regarded poet.
Published April 2017