The South Africa meets Italy project, as part of the 7th Word N Sound International Youth Poetry Festival 2017 and supported by the Istituto Italiano di Cultura in Pretoria is an expansion of this vision and while working small, aims to lay the foundation for a new way young people in different countries can engage in creative dialogue and foster mutually beneficial cultural relations.
The first ever exchange programme is anchored on the participation of young Italian Poet Alessandro Lutman’s participation in the 7th Word N Sound Festival and the various activities that make up the programme include:
Thursday 5 October 2017
Day Time: Written Remix Digital Writing Challenge: Don Mattera meets Pirandello:
- Writers and Poets from RSA and Italy respond to 2 poems by South African Poet and author Don Mattera and Italian Playwright and Poet Luigi Pirandello using 6 Word Stories on Twitter. The digital activation will celebrate two legendary Poets while bringing together the next generation of Poets from Italy and South Africa through the power of social media.
- Digital Platform: @wordnsound (Twitter), 10:00 – 16:00
Always An Animal by Luigi Pirandello
Without doing anything a lion is a lion:
but hapless man must brave death
to have the honor of being compared
with that animal, strong, without limit.
Nourished by the soaring thoughts of an
afflicted soul, if one reaches an apex.
A grand prize awaits. Then it is said
you truly fly like an eagle.
Write a sublime poem,
that sings in silken rhyme
of your innermost intense feelings,
and they’ll say you sing like a nightingale.
What must a man do to not be likened to
an animal? can he simply do nothing?
without feeling anxious or troubled?
People would then take him for a jackass.
(Translated by Arthur V. Dieli)
Senza far nulla, un leone è leone:
e un pover’uom dev’affrontar la morte
per avere l’onor del paragone
con quella bestia, senza stento, forte.
D’alti pensieri l’anima infelice
nutrite, si che s’alzi a eccelse mète.
Un gran premio v’aspetta. Vi si dice
che veramente un’aquila voi siete.
Sciogliete in soavissima armonia
il vostro chiuso intenso ardente duolo,
fatene una sublime poesia,
e vi diran che siete un rosignuolo.
Ma dunque per non essere una bestia
che dovrebbe far l’uomo? non far niente?
non pigliarsi ne affanno ne molestia?
E ciuco allora gli dirà la gente.
Proximity by Don Mattera
I stand too close to death
To misread the inscription
On the stone
My ears long accustomed
To the staccato main
Of pale gunfire
Against defiant bone.
Too close to the flaming mesh
Have poets stood
Yet condone the feud
That shrivels flesh
On the township pyre
I know too well
The proximity of this pain
Long saw the swell
Of the burning black grain
In this conflict of ideals
That spins the wheels
Of ideological disdain
Too well akin to grief and loss am I
That I should mock the longing eyes
That wince and weap
As we toss our sands
Of sad disguise
I stand too close to death
Remember to use the official hashtags when you tweet: #6WordStory and #SAmIT
Evening: Building Poetic Bridges – South Africa meets Italy
- Conversation and poetry Reading featuring Alessandro Lutman (Italy), Prof Raphael D’Abdon (RSA/Ital) and Thabiso Afurakan Mohare.
- Event Info: Sala Puccini, the Italian Club, 7 Marais Road, Bedfordview.18:30, Free / Supported by Istituto Italiano di Cultura in Pretoria.