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A espaldas de Dios / Behind God's Back

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Espaldas de dios cover

by Sándor Kányádi

A bilingual poetry collection translated into English from the original Hungarian by Paul Sohar Translated into Spanish by Rodrigo Escobar Holguín, Ricardo Pérez-Salamero García, and Carlos Hernández Peña

"Sándor Kányádi, resident alien urging fellow citizens to pay closer attention to the status of their fleeting lives, or a sad, clear voice among the din? Kányádi in an intelligent, nearly naked language tackles head-on the important issues of our time. Yet through his modest, cultivated lexicon he weaves the cultural with the personal in order to create a vision that is at once accessible, palpable and unassumingly empathetic. His is a profound poetry that echoes social awareness without preaching. He confronts a hypocrisy that haunts all earthbound citizens, and he does so with the humility of his father, barely a fourth grade graduate, whom Kánáydi honors throughout his poetry."
--Alan Britt, Towson University, Maryland

The three poets responsible for the Spanish translation first came to know Sándor Kányádi's poetry through English translations. Thus it is only appropriate to present these poems in both languages and make them accessible in both parts of the Western Hemisphere, north and south. The Hungarian titles are included for Hungarian readers who may want to look up the original text.

Three sections make up this small selection: "A Poem Is Something You Have To Tell," mostly pithy short poems in free verse, giving this section stylistic unity on personal subjects as well as on societal and ethnic concerns from all periods in Kányádi's life; "All Souls' Day in Vienna," the poet's opus magnum from his prime that summarizes the major themes of his oeuvre in a potpourri of his styles, modern free verse in addition to formal poetry with the terseness of folksongs in which he combines historical perspective with scenes of simple village life; "Under the Southern Cross," a poetry cycle inspired by the poet's tour of the Hungarian diaspora in South America when seeing his compatriots in that distant land brought back his anxiety about the survival of his ethnic minority back home, but he was also eager to take in the impressions of the tour and reflect them in his poems written in loco, also in a mix of traditional and modern styles which he pursued parallel all through his creative career. He is still active, except his reading tours are closer to home now, but he still recites his poems and the Hungarian classics from memory.

It's also appropriate to note, this special edition displays the versatility (or virtue) that Spanish language offers, as can be tasted here with these translations from Spain, Colombia, and Mexico.

Sándor Kányádi, biography

Paul Sohar biography

ISBN 978-1-933974-19-4

Ordering Information


Title Author ISBN-13 Price US$ Shipping US$
A espaldas de Dios / Behind God's Back Sándor Kányádi 978-1-933974-19-4 $15 each USA: $4.00 for one book; $1 each additional book
Canada: $5.00 for one book; $2 each additional book
Other non-US: $10.00 for one book; $4 each additional book

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