9781734317626 Download Sample PDF

ISBN: 9781734317619 (2021)

Translated, with notes and an introduction by Brian Kim Stefans. Foreword by Jennifer Moxley.

Poet of “logical revolts,” of sexual freedom, inveterate modernist, Symbolist, and inspiration to beatniks, conceptual artists and punks, Arthur Rimbaud wrote some of the most enduring poems of world literature. His career lasted all of five years, between 1870-1875. Here is a collection of all of his poems in verse, in a new English translation by American poet Brian Kim Stefans. With Rimbaud’s sense of songcraft in mind, Stefans has retained the French meters in his English versions. He is the first to have done this. The book opens with a Latin poem that Rimbaud wrote more than a year before his first known French poem, and it ends with a short poem he wrote a few years after leaving Paris, one which became a touchstone for Surrealist Andre Breton. CAConrad declares, “Brian Kim Stefans sets us ablaze with his astonishing new Rimbaud, proving it takes a worldly, genius poet to translate another. This book is a masterpiece!”

Brian Kim Stefans is a poet, digital artist and theorist who teaches in the English Department at UCLA. Recent poetry publications include the chapbook “A Theatrical Oasis in the Spine of the Moon” (2020), “Viva Miscegenation”: New Writing (2013), Kluge: A Meditation and other works (2007) and What Is Said to the Poet Concerning Flowers (2006). A volume of speculative literary criticism, Word Toys: Poetry and Technics, was published by the University of Alabama Press in 2017. Links to his digital work, including “The Dreamlife of Letters” (2001), can be found at his website arras.net

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Charles Bernstein:

Brian Kim Stefans’s Rimbaud is buoyantly readable and quirky as all get out, while staying close to both the sense of the French and its atmosphere (sensibility and rhythm and diction). Festivals of Patience puts Rimbaud into “the heart of your ear.”


If A Season In Hell is a favorite, now you can fully experience that tightened, loaded spring juuuuuust before it, detonating literature. Brian Kim Stefans sets us ablaze with his astonishing new Rimbaud, proving it takes a worldly, genius poet to translate another. This book is a masterpiece!

Will Alexander:

The syllabics of Rimbaud continue to scorch as they raise their wings in triumphant glare. These translations by Brian Kim Stefans both soar and mesmerically nettle with language that continuously hurtles epiphanies. Rimbaud’s images so unlimit the reader that their energy suffuses consciousness with lingual ozone not unlike transmuted cobalt.

Jennifer Moxley:

Brian Kim Stefans’s sensibilities make him a dream-match for the precocious Communard energy and pungent pathos of Arthur Rimbaud’s brilliant and varied poems in verse. Reading Festivals of Patience made me so happy! Stefans’s translations capture Rimbaud’s prelapsarian yearnings, old-world decay, snotty ageism, and heretical takedowns so beautifully you actually feel the sympathetic heart beating beneath it all. An amazing accomplishment.