Tomaž Šalamun was born in Zagreb, Croatia, in 1941, and is regarded as one of Slovenia’s greatest contemporary poets and one of the leading figures of the East European poetic avantgarde. His poetry is marked by a unique surrealistic style. Since the 1960s he has published 41 volumes of verse, which have been translated into more than twenty languages.
Šalamun grew up in Koper in the former Yugoslavia. Under Tito’s rule he was arrested in 1964 for publishing a poem that was taken to be critical of the regime, but was able to leave prison after five days thanks to a wave of international protest. Šalamun has for decades been a wanderer between worlds, spending several years in the USA where among other things he was a guest of the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop and a Fulbright Fellow at Columbia University. He taught in American universities and was cultural attaché at the Slovenian Embassy in New York. The many prizes he has won for his work include the Pushcart Prize, the Slovenian Prešeren Prize and, jointly with his German translator the Fabjan Hafner, the Prize of the City of Münster for International Poetry. He is a member of the Slovenian Academy for Arts and Sciences and lives in Ljubljana, Slovenia.
Publications in English translation
The Selected Poems of Tomaž Šalamun (Ecco Press, 1998)
The Shepherd, the Hunter (Pedernal, 1992)
The Four Questions of Melancholy (White Pine, 1997)
Feast (Harcourt, 2000)
Poker (Ugly Duckling Presse)
Row! (Arc Publications)
The Book for My Brother (Harcourt)
Woods and Chalices (Harcourt)
There's the Hand and There's the Arid Chair (Counterpath, 2009)