It is this contrast of the one and the many that lies beneath the prefatory remarks to another anthology. Six Latvian Poets, in this fine series of New Voices from Europe and Beyond. In her preface the series editor, Alexandra Buchler, refers to translation as
the outcome of a dialogue between two cultures, languages and different poetic sensibilities, a dialogue between collective as well as individual imaginations,
conducted by two voices, that of the poet and of the translator, and joined by a third interlocutor in the process of reading.
Introducing this anthology of contemporary Latvian poets the editor, leva Lesinska, places the background picture with clarity:
An overt engagement with history or social issues is almost totally absent from their work - perhaps because of an instinctive fear that the weight of history may turn out to be too much bear and may squash their own creativity, perhaps because of a desire to place themselves in the broader context of world literature or simply because of a youthful opposition to their predecessors
This sense of the personal voice that rings with an awareness of life's complexities and sadnesses, a world of ambiguities and sheer joy, is perfectly heard in Anna Auzina's contemplation of the self and the other:
This voice from the post-Soviet years sings of individualism in both form and content and it welcomes the reader in a manner that is both traditional in the use of metaphor and new in its fresh magnanimity.