[Second quick story about happiness—]

Ana Cristina Cesar
Translated from the Portuguese by Brenda Hillman, Helen Hillman, & Sebastião Edson Macedo

Second quick story about happiness—going down the hill at twilight—my love was far away, with that air of never doubting, and was saying: my parents...—even more sofly, so gently that I notice more than the others, after some time away—it's like returning to find the children all grown, and sitting on the balcony to share thoughts and memories of a time that's passed—but when I left (that day at the airport) there was still an air of mystery—now, it's now, going down this hill, without any, that I finally tell about my distant love, and I don't imitate my nostalgia, but that gentleness, yours, happy like this.

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Ana Cristina Cesar

Ana Cristina Cesar (1952-1983) has posthumously become one of Brazil’s best known avant-garde poets. After her suicide in 1983, her innovative, mythic, and dreamlike poetry has greatly influenced subsequent generations of writers. Cesar, who also worked internationally as a journalist and translator, often found inspiration in the writings of other poets, among them Emily Dickinson, Armando Freitas Filho, and Gertrude Stein.

Brenda Hillman (b. 1951) is a poet, educator, editor and activist; she is the author of ten collections of poetry with Wesleyan University Press, most recently Seasonal Works with Letters on Fire (2013), which received the Griffin International Poetry Prize, and Extra Hidden Life, Among the Days, forthcoming in 2018. Hillman serves as the Filippi Professor of Poetry at St. Mary’s College of California.

Helen Hillman was born in 1924 São Paulo, Brazil, and came to the United States in the 1940s, where she lived and worked in Tucson, Arizona as a homemaker, gardener and translator. Her co-translations of Ana Cristina Cesar’s At Your Feet will be her first published book. She is a mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, and currently lives in Princeton, New Jersey.

Sebastião Edson Macedo is a Brazilian poet and scholar (b. 1974), author of three collections of poetry. He has collaborated with literary magazines in Brazil, translating Allen Ginsberg, Lee Harwood, Yehuda Amichai, Konstantino Kavafi, Alejandro Crotto, among others. Macedo holds a PhD in Brazilian literature from the University of California, Berkeley.

Ana Cristina Cesar (1952-1983) has posthumously become one of Brazil's best known avant-garde poets. After her suicide in 1983, her innovative, mythic, and dreamlike poetry has greatly influenced subsequent generations of writers. At Your Feet was originally published as a poetic sequence and later became part of a longer hybrid work— sometimes prose, sometimes verse—documenting the life and mind of a forcefully active literary woman. Cesar, who also worked internationally as a journalist and translator, often found inspiration in the writings of other poets, among them Emily Dickinson, Armando Freitas Filho, and Gertrude Stein. Her innovative writing has been featured in Sun and Moon's classic anthology Nothing the Sun Could Not Explain—20 Contemporary Brazilian Poets (2000). Poet Brenda Hillman and her mother Helen Hillman (a native speaker of Portuguese) worked with Brazilian poet Sebastião Edson Macedo and translator/editor Katrina Dodson to render as faithfully as possible the intricately layered poems of this legendary writer. At Your Feet includes both the English translation and original Portuguese.

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