Boris Khersonsky and Lyudmila Khersonskaya

Boris Khersonsky (1950) is considered one of the most important Ukrainian poets writing in Russian. His poetry has received numerous awards and while it is intellectual and ironic – inviting comparisons to the works of Joseph Brodsky –, it is also passionately, fiercely anti-war and anti-imperialist. Despite history appearing to repeat itself with the support of imperialism, Khersonsky seems to believe in the power of the poetic word. Lyudmila Khersonskaya (1964) is a Moldova-born poet who has published four collections of poetry. Her poetry has been published in all major Russian literary magazines and she has translated poetry from English into Russian (including Vladimir Nabokov and Seamus Heaney). Odesa resident Khersonskaya has used her poetry to describe the impact of Russia’s military aggression on life and people in Ukraine. This way, she creates a haunting world, demonstrating that war and imperialism do not only destroy houses and landscapes, they destroy people’s contact with reality, and their ability to adequately process what is happening. In 2022, Boris Khersonsky and Lyudmila Khersonskaya published their joint collection of poetry in English The Country Where Everyone’s Name is Fear. At the HeadRead festival, they will speak to poet and translator Igor Kotjuh.

Performs at

Date Event Name Location
Sunday, 2 June at 17:00 Boris Khersonsky, Lyudmila Khersonskaya and Igor Kotjuh Estonian Writers’ Union

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