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Highlights From Our Newest Poetry

Highlights From Our Newest Poetry - January 18, 2019

2080383Robert the Devil, trans. by Samuel N. Rosenberg

Page one of this poem started “Now hear this, young and old: / Once there was, in days gone by, / A noble duke in Normandy.” By page two, his wife was childless and crying, “God, you must hate me … Satan … help me, I pray!”

It won’t surprise you to hear that the son they end up with is the titular Robert the Devil. I’d never heard of it before – apparently this is the first modern English translation of the 13th-century Robert le Diable. The plot moves forward quickly, the language is nice and clear, and I’m definitely looking forward to reading the rest of it; sometimes, in a world where almost all poetry published is lyric, it’s nice to go back to a good old narrative poem.


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