Leading Poet of Slovenia to Speak at UMass Amherst

AMHERST, Mass. - Tomaz Salamun, Solovenia’s leading poet, will be at the University of Massachusetts April 16 at 4 p.m. in Herter Auditorium (room 227) for an informal question and answer session. Later the same evening, Salamun will read from his new book, "Four Questions of Melancholy, New & Selected Poems," at the Globe Bookshop in Northampton at 7:30 p.m. Both events are free and open to the public.

Salamun belongs to the first generation of post-war Eastern European poets, which includes Russia’s Joseph Brodsky (a former Mount Holyoke College professor) and Poland’s Adam Zagajewski, all of whom came of age in the 1960s. He was born in Yugoslavia in 1941 and grew up in the town of Koper. In 1964 he was briefly imprisoned as a result of his work as editor of a literary magazine in the waning days of Yugoslavian Stalinism.

Salamun burst on the literary scene in Slovenia with the publication of "Poker" in 1966. He has since published more than two dozen collections of poetry in Slovenian and has been translated into English, Polish, German, Swedish, Hungarian, French, and Serbo-Croatian. His latest book was edited by renowned poet Christopher Merrill and contains translations by Merrill and other respected poets such as Charles Simic and Michael Biggens.

The event is the second in the Visiting Writers’ Series at the University of Massachusetts. It is co-sponsored by Mount Holyoke, Smith, Hampshire and Amherst colleges as well as The Massachusetts Review.