Poker (2nd Edition)
Author: Tomaž Šalamun
Translator: Joshua Beckman
Publisher: Ugly Duckling Presse (2007)
Poker is the first of more than two dozen books of poetry by Tomaž Šalamun, the internationally renowned Slovenian post-war poet. Shortly after Šalamun was born in Zagreb, Croatia, his family fled from the rising pro-Nazi Ustaša party to Koper, Slovenia, near Trieste. Before turning to poetry, Šalamun had studied art history, worked as a curator, and was a member of the conceptual and performance art group OHO. Having had some tangles with the authorities as editor of the chief Slovenian cultural journal, Šalamun published Poker in 1966 in samizdat. It was a small, underground, self-published edition, yet, its playful, anti-authoritarian, postmodern approach instantly became influential for an entire generation of poets in Slovenia and the rest of Yugoslavia.
A finalist for the PEN America Poetry in Translation Award, this edition, vibrantly translated by award-winning poet Joshua Beckman in collaboration with the author, makes Poker available in its entirety in English.
"The poetry of Tomaž Šalamun is truly one of the wonders of the literary world."