Multitudes of Migrations

Gloria Gervitz in conversation with Athena Farrokhzad

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Gloria Gervitz in conversation with Athena Farrokhzad

Mexican poet Gloria Gervitz has been writing the same poem for over forty years. The epic poem Migrations (Migraciones) is based on the history of Gervitz’s own Jewish family that fled persecution in Eastern Europe in the early 1900s. Meet the legendary poet in conversation with Athena Farrokhzad.

Migrations is one of the greatest poetic projects of our time – a poem in constant movement through family, religion, death and sexuality, but also through perpetual newly published versions. Gervitz combines different times, traditions, languages, alphabets and voices and takes the reader through a multitude of escape routes and journeys, dreams, memories and landscapes.

The project has been compared to Walt Whitman’s life work Leaves of Grass and has clear allusions to Latin American authors such as Clarice Lispector, Alejandra Pizarnik and Jorge Luis Borges. The last edition of Migraciones came out in Chile in 2019 at the same time that Gervitz received the Pablo Neruda Prize. Translator Helene Hovden Hareide uses this version in the Norwegian translation – the first version of the poem published in Norway.

New versions of the poem are constantly arising in languages such as German, English, Arabic and Swedish. In Sweden, where two versions of the poem have already been published, Gervitz has reached cult status in recent years. Meet the legendary Mexican poet in conversation with Swedish poet Athena Farrokhzad, who considers Migraciones to be one of her favorite works.

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