New Book :: A Song by the Aegean Sea

A Song by the Aegean Sea poetry by Mohamed Metwalli book cover image


A Song by the Aegean Sea
Poetry by Mohamed Metwalli
Translated by Gretchen McCullough
Egret Chapbooks, 2022

From the Introduction: “Mohamed Metwalli was recognized as a poet in the Arab world at a young age in 1992, when he won the prestigious Yousef el-Khal prize by Riad El-Rayyes Books in Lebanon for his poetry collection, Once Upon a Time. He was only twenty-two. The Yousef El-Khal prize was a highly coveted award for the best first collection for poets in the Arabic-speaking world. Once, with a mischievous grin on his face, he told me how he rolled up at the ceremony in Beirut, clad in jeans and sneakers to pick up the prize – it was his first trip out of Egypt. A little over fifty now, he has published four collections of poetry. . . This book celebrates the underbelly of the city: the gypsies selling flowers, the roving musicians, the mussel-sellers, and the protesters. The elements of the city’s coastline are merged with the characters in an impressionistic, yet surreal canvas from a stranger’s point of view. The Traveler, i.e., the poet, or the singer of the Aegean song yearns to become part of the scene. Through this yearning, the poetry becomes lyrical.” – Gretchen McCullough

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