Letter from the Editor

Translation was never limited to literature. An essential practice, its traces are all around us.

In the latest issue of Alchemy, we celebrate how languages surround us — not only in texts we choose to read but in the kind of murals and graffiti encountered in cities worldwide. Two highlights of this, our seventh issue, are translations from the streets of Saint Petersburg, Russia, and Toledo, Spain.

Translation also reaches back into the past to cast light on our present moment. Our issue features Spanish poetry that spans almost a thousand years — including both a fragment from a medieval lyric written in Old Spanish and the innovative work of a contemporary poet in post-Franco Spain.

The translations featured here also cross borders and genres: We have even more micro sci-fi bursts from Tijuana, part of a series started this summer, and we round out the issue with a set of sparse, striking poems from Korea and a contemporary fairy tale from Russia.

Translations connect us in myriad and unexpected ways. We are pleased to share this issue of Alchemy with you, and we hope it fosters even more connections that transcend boundaries and languages.

Sarah Ciston, editor