Factory of Tears
Factory of Tears (Lannan Literary Selections)
by Valzhyna Mort
translation by Elizabeth Oehlkers Wright and Franz Wright
$15.00 List Price
Even more than its neighbors, Belarus remains chained to its past. Landlocked by Russia and the Baltic states, the country was decimated in the 1940s by the Nazis; over the next two decades, it was absorbed into the Soviet Union, its language and culture suppressed. The majority of postwar poets exported from the former Eastern bloc have been Polish (Herbert, Milosz, Szymborska), and Belarus, still crouching in Moscow’s long shadow, has yet to produce a bard of international stature. So when the press release for Valzhyna Mort’s Factory of Tears declares it “the first- ever Belarusian/English book of poems published in the United States,” the statement comes tinged with urgency.
Unlike her cultural forebears, Mort, born in 1981, does not seem keen to exhume her country’s past. She is similarly ambivalent about
… full text available to registered users