The Blue House: Collected Works of Tomas Tranströmer

Tomas Tranströmer, Patty Crane, trans.

Forthcoming October 2023

With slow strokes and subtle, rich lines, The Blue House: Collected Works of Tomas Tranströmer is evidence of a Nobel Prize–winning poet tracing the world with his pen. A stunning testament to an illustrious career, The Blue House gathers poems and writings from Tranströmer’s fourteen collections into a single book. Original Swedish sits alongside their English translations as Patty Crane translates his words into revelatory language acute in the understanding of human change and loss.

Subtle in politics and exact in imagery, the poems of The Blue House range from agile haiku to cinematic prose. Social phenomena are observed in rich detail—for instance, a “dictator’s bust” presiding over a train car of doomed passengers—and the collection is propelled by empathy and curiosity. Under Tranströmer’s watchful eye, no subject is overlooked: Milij Balakirev, the Russian composer; Nils Dacke, the Swedish peasant who led a rebellion against the king; and him, the stranger who forgets his name by the roadside. From the personal to the political to the existential, Tranströmer’s poems act as a telephoto lens, granting us reinvigorated access to the world we live in.

ISBN: 9781556596858

Format: Hardcover

About the Author

Nobel Laureate Tomas Tranströmer was born in Stockholm in 1931 and studied literature and psychology at the University of Stockholm. A poet and psychologist who worked with disadvantaged youth, Tranströmer authored numerous full-length poetry collections translated into more than fifty languages. He died in Stockholm in 2015.

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About the Translator

Patty Crane’s recent translations of Tomas Tranströmer’s poems have appeared in Blackbird, Guernica, Five Points, Free Verse, Plume, The Literary Review, and elsewhere. BRIGHT SCYTHE, a bilingual selection of her translations, was published by Sarabande Books (2015). Crane is author of the poetry collection BELL I WAKE TO (Zone 3 Press First Book Award, 2019) and the book-length poem something flown (Concrete Wolf Chapbook Award Series, 2018). Her poems have most recently appeared in Bellevue Literary Review, Poetry East, and …

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“Incandescent. Crane’s translations feel as close to the original Swedish as one is likely to get. . . . This new gathering will draw readers into the poet’s grounded realm of both the familiar and the magical. . . . The Blue House will long be considered the definitive tome of Tranströmer’s work in English and should be on every poetry shelf.”—Raúl Niño, Booklist, STARRED review