Jan/Feb 2018 • Vol. XL No. 1 Generation Zero: New Cuban PoetryJanuary 1, 2018 |

Iron Flowers on the Chest of a Man

From the Spanish.    Tonight a bat's fluttered into the house. Its flight is easy, but awkward. Warning: it might be a spy tactic. Still I hide nothing in my belongings to threaten national security. I'm just trying to write a few lines. Two or three words. Verses to make music in the ears of uninvited guests. Words that if they have any power it won't be to free me. Power to free. And so from the shadows come these eyes like evoking a ghost. Names I'll forget. Even if I refuse. Soon they'll come to be erased from my memory by the day's sour wine. Urgently. When I rub my head hard against the walls. When I write verses to the changing seasons. Far from the tropics. Things friends have told to stay out. Behind the bars of the soul where paper roses climb. Iron flowers on the chest of a man. Behind the bars. I attempt the start of "a return to my prison." House where bats perch and suck blood on iron flowers. A return to prison. Margarita's forbidden d

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Luis Yuseff
Luis Yuseff (Holguín 1975) is a poet and editor. He is the author of eleven books of prize-winning poetry, the latest being Dolor de resurrección (2014), which received the prestigious Gaceta de Cuba Poetry Prize. Two editions are his Selected Poems have appeared on the island. He has also selected and edited two anthologies, one of Cuban poets and another of Cuban prose writers. He lives in Holguín.  
Photo of Katherine M. Hedeen
Katherine M. Hedeen is the poetry in translation editor for the Kenyon Review and the associate editor of Action Books.  She is a two-time recipient of a NEA Translation Project Grant, she is a professor of Spanish at Kenyon College.
Víctor Rodríguez Núñez is one of Cuba's most outstanding contemporary writers. He has published more than thirty books of poetry throughout Latin America and Europe and has received major awards all over the Spanish-speaking world. He divides his time between Gambier, Ohio, where he is professor of Spanish at Kenyon College, and Havana, Cuba.

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