The poems in Jaan Kaplinski’s The Wandering Border engage with politics, nature, observation, children, sadness, the senses, knowledge, the seasons, and dreams. A substantial collection from a leading European poet, essayist, anthropologist, and translator.
“The second US publication of the fine Estonian poet, one of the most important in Eastern Europe… Weighty issues are couched in a plain poetry of gentle images, of great tenderness and sincerity.” —Booklist
“The depth and mysteriousness that his poems often evoke result from the slightly startling image sequences he favors as much as from the accuracy of his descriptions… [Kaplinski looks] for ways to nudge his reader to fresh sightings… At other times his pared-down, focused lyrics suggest through omission.” —World Literature Today
“If I should choose one word to characterize this collection, the word would be maturity… There are heights to soar to and depths to explore. There is truth and beauty… The poems do not read like translated poetry, there are no borders between the poet and the reader, and this is the great merit of the translators.” —Journal of Baltic Studies
“Quietistic in spirit, [Kaplinski’s] poems are notable for their warm acceptance and celebration of life… The untitled meditations on the world and our place in it are perfectly poised but take nothing for granted. Naive in a good sense, they suggest that beauty still has its claims to make alongside truth.” —Stand Magazine
“[Kaplinski] is re-thinking Europe, revisioning history, in these poems of our times. Elegant, musing, relentless, inward, fresh. Poems of gentle politics and love that sometimes scare you.” —Gary Snyder