Collected poems, 1920-1954

by Eugenio Montale

Paper Book, 1998





New York, : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1998


"Eugenio Montale, who won the 1975 Nobel Prize in Literature, brought the tradition of Italian lyric poetry that begins with Dante into the twentieth century. Montale forged a myth out of his own story that resonates profoundly with contemporary man's anguished existential experience of love and solitude, and his beautiful, stirringly individual work deals courageously and subtly with the dilemmas of the modern era: its tormented history and politics, its struggle with doubt and belief." "Jonathan Galassi's versions of Montale's major work - the arc stretching from Ossi di seppia (1925) through Le occasioni (1939) to La bufera e altro (1954) - are the clearest, most accurate, most convincing yet made. They are accompanied by an interpretive essay and by extensive notes that elucidate the extremely rich context of Montale's often dense and allusive poetry."--Jacket.… (more)

Media reviews

The original stands to these translations as the impossible communion of self and other appeared to the young Montale. Each translation reenacts the yearning the poet expressed, the frustration of another attractive but not quite successful attempt to overcome barriers—in this case that between Italian and English. Yet the absence of the definitive version at least allows us to fill our time by trying again. One of the great pleasures of reading a bilingual edition is that you can enjoy the liberty ... of imagining different approximations to the impossible perfect solution.


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