Letters So That Happiness
Author: Arnaldo Calveyra
Translator: Elizabeth Zuba
Publisher: Ugly Duckling Presse (2018)
Argentine poet Arnaldo Calveyra’s first book of poetry, Letters So That Happiness (Cartas para qe la alegría), tells the story of the author’s one-way journey as a young man from his home in the northern pampas to Buenos Aires in 1950. It was the first leg of a journey that would end in exile. In this gentle, diffuse text in which time and place radiate and recede and spring up many and green, Letters strikingly anticipates the collusive forces that would shape the rest of his life—dissolution and preservation. The author of over 25 books of literature and theater, Calveyra went on to become a national treasure in his adopted country of France, winning the prestigious award of Commander of the French Order of Arts and Letters in 1999, and eventually, after the fall of the military dictatorship in 1983, equally in his native Argentina. Letters So That Happiness is the first of his works to be translated and published in English.