Swallowing Mercury

Swallowing Mercury


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Longlisted for the Man Booker International Prize

“Achieves a form of literary alchemy that mesmerizes.”—The New York Times

In this celebrated debut from prize-winning poet Wioletta Greg, Wiola looks back on her youth in a close-knit, agricultural community in 1980s Poland. Her memories are precise, intense, distinctive, sensual: a playfulness and whimsy rise up in the gossip of the village women, rumored visits from the Pope, and the locked room in the dressmaker's house, while political unrest and predatory men cast shadows across this bright portrait. In prose that sparkles with a poet’s touch, Wioletta Greg's debut animates the strange wonders of growing up.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781945492044
Publisher: Transit Books
Publication date: 09/12/2017
Pages: 146
Sales rank: 727,495
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range: 14 - 18 Years

About the Author

WIOLETTA GREG is a Polish writer; she was born in a small village in 1974 in the Jurassic Highland of Poland. In 2006, she left Poland and moved to the UK. Between 1998–2012 she published six poetry volumes, as well as a novel, Swallowing Mercury, which spans her childhood and her experience of growing up in Communist Poland. Her short stories and poems have been published in Asymptote, the Guardian, Litro Magazine, Poetry Wales, Wasafiri, and The White Review. Her works have been translated into English, Catalan, French, Spanish, and Welsh.

ELIZA MARCINIAK is an editor and translator. She lives in London, England. Her recent projects include Swallowing Mercury, by Wioletta Greg, translated from Polish.

Table of Contents

The Fairground Girl 7

The Jesus Raffle 11

Little Table, Set Thyself! 19

Waiting for the Popemobile 26

The Little Paint Girl 32

A Picture Pays a Visit 43

Whitsunday 48

An Easter Pasha 52

Spiders from Jerusalem 59

Waves 63

Gienek the Combine Driver 67

Pierced Lids 72

The Dressmaker's Secret 76

Strawberry 81

The Woman with a Dog 86

Sour Cherries 91

The Phillumenist 96

Dolce Vita 103

Masters of Scrap 108

The Return of Zorro 118

The Belated Feeding of Bees 123

Unripe 127

Neon over the Jupiter 135

Translator's Note 143

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