Author: Aase Berg
Translator: Johannes Göransson
Publisher: Ugly Duckling Presse (2012)
Translated from the Swedish by Johannes Göransson. Aase Berg's Transfer Fat (Forsla fett), nominated in 2002 for Sweden's prestigious Augustpriset for the best poetry book, is a haunting amalgamation of languages and elements—of science, of pregnancy, of whales, of the naturally and unnaturally grotesque—that births things unforeseen and intimately alien. Johannes Göransson's translation captures the seething instability of Berg's bizarre compound nouns and linguistic contortions.
"The super-electron microscope Berg has used in her research shows the world's smallest particles—the vibrations of strings (belly buttons, violin strings, super strings)—announcing that matter is music and music is language and language is matter. As in the singularity of a black hole, the reader will find that time and space have become one, and that there are words in all directions."
"Johannes Göransson's translations of Aase Berg are themselves a kind of gorgeous, dripping fat transference, a 'carry[ing of the] smelt / across the hard lake,' an extra, extra 'pouring' of the 'runny body.' Görannsson's radical theories of translation, as satanic addition and glorious mutation, are at their absolute best in Transfer Fat. And Berg's 'meat which flows / between the fingers' is fat to bursting with the sick, slick permeations and violent political possibilities of language/bodies gone haywire. Make that hare-wire."
"TRANSFER FAT distends time-space, makes it seize, stutter, and repeat itself. These minute (in-)verses offer temporary microarchitectures no bigger than a duct, an eyelash or a black radioactive grain which might collapse or reboot the Universe in the very next frame. But not here, not yet, where 'rabies is freedom / in the Year of the Hare // here in the black fathermilk / of loneliness.'"