Is It Poetry? (Paperback)

Is It Poetry? By Toshiko Hirata, Eric E. Hyett (Translator), Spencer Thurlow (Translator) Cover Image
By Toshiko Hirata, Eric E. Hyett (Translator), Spencer Thurlow (Translator)
Not in Stock. Available to Order.


A profound collection of poetry from Japanese poet Toshiko Hirata, expounding on readership and everyday life.

Produced on the same day each month over the course of two years, every poem in Is It Poetry? (a pun also meaning "the seventh day" in Japanese) is a window into everyday life in Japan. Toshiko Hirata's poems evoke awe and light in the daily minutiae of contemporary life, achieving both prosody and narrative cohesion colored by her dark yet warm artistic sensibility. Beloved and awarded in Japan, Hirata possesses an extraordinary ability to turn an ordinary event like an old man cycling through a park into a journey that elucidates something profound.

This translation offers entry into a busy Tokyo brimming with puns, imagery, sounds, and whimsy and asks what is to cherished, feared, loved--and what is not.

About the Author

Hirata Toshiko is one of Japan's best-known contemporary poets, as well as a renowned playwright and author of seventeen novels. She is associated with the 'women's boom' in contemporary Japanese literature. Her collection, Shinanoka (Tokyo, Shichōsha, 2004), or, Is It Poetry? earned Hirata the Hagiwara Sakutarō Prize for poetry.Eric E. Hyett and Spencer Thurlow are a poetry translation team from Massachusetts. Their first translated book, Sonic Peace by contemporary female Japanese poet Kiriu Minashita (Phoneme Media, 2018), was shortlisted for the 2018 National Translation Award and the 2018 Lucien Stryk Asian Translation Prize. Their translations and essays have appeared in Granta, The Georgia Review, World Literature Today, Modern Poetry in Translation, Pendemics, Transference, The Cincinnati Review.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781646052738
ISBN-10: 1646052730
Publisher: Phoneme Media
Publication Date: January 23rd, 2024
Pages: 240
Language: English