Antonella Zagaroli
A Selection of Poems 1985—2010

Translation and Introduction by
Anamaría Crowe Serrano



Paperback, 334 pages
ISBN 978-0-9823849-7-8


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A generous selection in Italian and English from two collections of poetry (La maschera della Gioconda / The Gioconda's Mask and Serrata a Ventaglio /Fan-locked), a volume of prose poems (La volpe blu /The Blue Fox) and an epic poem (Venere minima/Minimal Venus), plus newly published pieces.

ANTONELLA ZAGAROLI was born in Rome and received an honors degree in Anglo-American Literature from La Sapienza University in 1978. In 1993 she obtained a professional diploma in counselling and from 1992 to 1996 completed a master's program in poetry therapy in the United States. In 1986 she published her first book of poetry, La maschera della Gioconda; thereafter, she not only wrote, but embarked on a series of explorations seeking to expand the range and uses of poetry.

In 1995, using the American National Association for Poetry Therapy as a model, Zagaroli founded the Associazione Laubea, now Onlus Laubea, a non-profit Italian association for the application of poetry in psychology. She has run workshops in Italy for adults, teenagers and children using a literary technique based on personalized re-writing of poetic texts. Collaborating with other associations and institutions, she has organized public poetry, art and awareness events in health-care centers, schools and libraries. In 2007 she wrote a book of poetic reportage, Quadernetto Dalit, based on voluntary work she did in India. This book was published in English as Dalit Notebook and distributed in India. Today she continues to develop theoretical/practical encounters between the language of poetry, art in general and the language of psychology, bringing together scientists, historians, sociologists and other artists.

ANAMARÍA CROWE SERRANO, the translator, is Irish and lives in Dublin. Working in several languages for many years, she has translated Seamus Heaney, Brendan Kennelly, Gerardo Beltran, Giovanna Sicari, Alfredo de Palchi and Elsa Cross. For Chelsea Editions she has previously translated Annamaria Ferramosca's Other Signs, Other Circles (2009) and, together with Riccardo Duranti and Anthony Molino, Valerio Magrelli's Instructions on How to Read a Newspaper (2008). Of her own work she has published a collection of short stories, Dall'altra parte, (2003), a one-act play, L'interprete (2003) and, with Annamaria Ferramosca, an experimental poetic dialogue in Italian and English entitled Paso Doble (2006). In 2008 the British firm Shearsman published her first collection of poetry, Femispheres.



"The poetry of the chosen poet must impress me with his or her language and style: it must be poetry that does not repeat itself poem after poem, and I want it to be in constant movement like life itself. Simply stated, if poetry does not move it is not poetry… It is valid for all past and future authors whom I have selected or will select for publication; and for the author of this volume, Mindskin, Antonella Zagaroli." ~ Alfredo de Palchi

"Zagaroli's influences undoubtedly include poets to whom she makes references, particularly James Joyce and Paul Valèry, whose attempt to forge new poetic idioms, exploring the process of knowledge and creativity, are reflected in her work. She picks up their imaginative thread and runs freely with it, immersing her own stream of conscious-ness in the sounds of words (alliteration and assonance are everywhere), in associations and collocations that are wacky, albeit surprisingly logical, and at times very funny." ~ Anamaría Crowe Serrano






From Serrata a ventaglio / Fan-locked (2001-2004)

From Unpublished Poems / The Thinking Body

Poetess Antonella Zagaroli


Selections from Serrata a ventaglio / Fan-locked (2001-2004)

"Su un muretto al sole s'addormenta passato"
dicono i boccioli nella neve d'aprile,
un passero ingrigito risponde dal flume
il ramo fugge verso la cima, in superficie
fra nebbie odorose si libera l'equilibrio delle sementi

"On a sunlit wall the past is falling asleep"
say the buds in the april snow,
a greying sparrow answers from the river
the branch flees towards the top, on the surface
among fragrant mists the equilibrium of seeds is released


Potrei entrare nel labirinto
in quel vortice dove tutto si confonde
e il bianco accoglie ogni senso,
forse mi scoprirei come sono

nuda vertigine profumata.

Per rivelare la cadenza al ritmo
ti incontrerei sugli scogli, vergine madre mia

I could go into that whirling maze
where everything is mixed up
and whiteness welcomes all meaning,
maybe I'd discover myself as I am

naked scented dizziness

To reveal to rhythm its beat
I'd find you on the rocks, my virgin mother



From Unpublished Poems / The Thinking Body

I pensieri dei più
il gusto i piaceri il dolore le risate l'orgoglio gli orgasmi
le nevrosi Ie compagnie le nostalgie
le madri i consigli l' odissea
l'esempio dei più

i loro guasti.
1 lugio 2009

The thoughts of the majority
taste pleasures pain laughter pride orgasms
neurosis friends nostalgia
mothers advice odyssey
the example of the majority
their failures.

1 July 2009

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