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Sergius Seeks Bacchus
Sergius Seeks Bacchus: Translated from the Indonesian by Tiffany Tsao | Norman Erikson Pasaribu
4 posts | 1 read | 1 to read
To say it is hard to be queer in Indonesiais a gross understatement. LGBTQI Indonesians encounter violence on a regularbasis - from those around them, and increasingly, from the state itself. Yetthis was the stage on which Norman Erikson Pasaribu's poetry collection Sergius Seeks Bacchus made its debut,breaking new ground to become, in the words of another Indonesian poet MikaelJohani, 'a queer pioneer' on 'an extremely heteronormative poetry scene'. Sergius Seeks Bacchus is a heart-breaking yet humorous rumination on what it means to bein the minority on multiple levels -- in terms of sexuality, but also, ethnicityand religion. Drawing on the experiences of fellow members of the queercommunity and especially on the poet's life as an openly gay writer ofBataknese descent and Christian background, the collection furnishes readerswith an alternative gospel, a book of bittersweet and tragicomic good newspieced together from the poet's encounters with ridicule, persecution,loneliness, and also, happiness. 'The poems, though seeminglylight-hearted, provide the reader room to delve deeper into many matters, boththe tragic and comic aspects of humanity: sex, religion, and politics, evenpoetry itself. His greatest strength, however, lies in his sly humour - his abilityto write poems without putting on poetic airs.' -- EkaKurniawan 'His is a new and magical voiceemerging in literature, yet one almost preternaturally wise, profoundlycelebratory of the history and possibility of poetry.' -- Christos Tsiolkas
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RachelO
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I‘m not a book collector. I‘ve never truly appreciated just how annoying this is. Think I‘ve got it now though...

**WHAT am I supposed to do with this???! 😑

DuckOfDoom And WHY do publishers keep on doing this!!!? 1mo
StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego That is very annoying. 1mo
RachelO @StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego @duckofdoom It‘d be fine, if only they weren‘t numbered! The tall one‘s poetry, so I kind-of get why it‘s a different shape. But... 🤷🏻‍♀️ 1mo
Ruthiella Why publishers? Why?😖 1mo
RachelO @Ruthiella Surely they must realise?! I‘m going to have to split them up. Just too annoying on the shelf together! 1mo
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RachelO
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One of queer Indonesian poet Norman Erikson Pasaribu‘s #imaginaryplaces, somewhere to escape to. #wanderingjune

The full poem is in PDF form at https://europalia.eu/files/pdf/Norman-Erikson-Pasaribu-EN.pdf

BarbaraBB Niice! 6mo
Cinfhen Lovely 6mo
47 likes2 comments
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RachelO
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Pickpick

Poetry in translation from #Indonesia. Sad, funny, tragic and hopeful; living a lie, not living a lie, mythology, faith, perhaps, pop songs, loss, dreams of a better life - and life beyond alien invasion. Pick!

The translator‘s note‘s really interesting - she talks about translating a collection about queerness from a language where there are no gendered pronouns into English where we tend to talk in binaries.

TrishB Sounds really interesting 👍🏻 7mo
Cathythoughts Lovely sound to the words ✨✨✨ 7mo
54 likes2 comments
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RachelO
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The next book in my Tilted Axis Press subscription arrived the other day - poems from queer Indonesian poet Norman Erikson Pasaribu.

A few from the colkection are reproduced in Asymptote Journal: https://www.asymptotejournal.com/poetry/norman-erikson-pasaribu-sergius-seeks-ba...

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