Interview by Antonio Parente

Specialist of Finnish literature, Italian scholar and translator Antonio Parente sent me following questions. He has translated 6 of my poems in Italian and this interview will be included.
  1. Apart from poetry, you write prose and non-fiction books, essays: which genre is the one you consider the most efficient to deliver your message?
2. You are also a translator; could you tell the role of your previous translations (if any)
in the process of creating your poems?
3. Could you name some of the poets (or, more in general, any artist) who inspired you ? Could you also explain why?
4. Is there something else you think is important your Italian readers know about your
work?
  1. I cannot really judge which genre is the most efficient for my message. But I do agree with your opinion, I do not consider all literature political, but it has a certain view of world and it promotes certain values. This view links literature to communication.
As I have background as a journalist, it may sometimes be non-fiction, because in it I can combine a kind of hybrid writing: fact packed with fictionlike description and even poetic moments. In general, I like a kind of hybrid writing, which can include elements of non-fiction, journalism, fiction and poetry. I believe I started this experimenting already in my Portugal-book Tuhansien portaiden lumo, which however separated the genres in poetry and non-fiction.
2. I do not think translating affects my own writing, at least not consciously. Lastly I have translated a compilation of poems by José Luís Peixoto and an anthology of Portuguese poets. This anthology include also prose poems by various writers and I have a lot of
prose poems in my own poetic production. Maybe I have unconsciously been inspired by
some of the poets. I personally like a lot poetry by suicidally dead Daniel Faria, who is a
combination of religious convictions and profane belief in various senses, even if I am not religious at all: I may only believe that there exists someone superior to us.
3. I think to this question you find and answer from my book Sanan paino, which I include in this message in digital form. I like both traditional and experimental writers, classical
singers (I am a classical singer too, I sing opera, e.g. Renée Fleming) and visual artists (Cy Twombly, expressionist painters, who deal with themes like identity). Common to
all my favourite artists is that their art is not only expression of individual beliefs, but it has to carry also something socio-culturally heavy meaning and they have to reflect also what is going on in outside world.
4. I am a big fan of Italian opera and cinema, especially bel canto of Verdi and Puccini (whom I sing also myself) and I love Italian food and arthouse film directors, like Fellini and Visconti. They are my all time favourite directors, the other one giant surrealist genius
and the other one painting historial epoch dramas.
I like also contemporary films dealing with Sicilian mafia problems like Sollima´s Suburra. Italy is a combination of gioia di vivire and heavy problems (like environmental in
polluted areas governed by mafia).

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