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Eyewear Publishing

A Small Love Dictionary of Untranslatable Japanese Words

A Small Love Dictionary of Untranslatable Japanese Words

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The poignant stillness of temples and shrines, the lush green of the rice fields and the gentle breeze waffling through the susuki grasses: Through her attention to the ‘untranslatable’, Eleni Cay celebrates the universal and yet deeply local experiences that expand our own dictionaries. The twenty-two poems in this pamphlet are based on Cay’s selection of her favourite Japanese words, the meanings of which can only be understood in contact with the timeless. This is her third pamphlet of English poems, after Autumn Dedications and Colours of the Swan.

Eleni Cay is a poet bold enough to name human feeling, the bitter and the beautiful. These short poems are slivers of emotion, translating the mystical into the natural and everyday, a translation delicately balanced between cultures, Japanese and English-speaking, Keats and Basho. Read them: you have already felt them. -- Claire Crowther

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Eleni Cay

Eleni Cay is a Slovakian-born poet living in England and Norway. Her award- winning first collection A Butterfly’s Trembling in the Digital Age was published in Slovak (Cakanka Press), German (Hein Verlag) and English (Parthian Books).

Her first two pamphlets, Colours of the Swan and Autumn Dedications, were published by Westbury Arts Centre as part of her poetry residency and Eleni’s third pamphlet, A Small Love Dictionary of Untranslatable Japanese Words was published by Eyewear Press in 2017.

Eleni’s most recent poems have appeared in Acumen, Atticus Review, The Cardiff Review and Poetry Ireland Review. Eleni is known for her multimedia poetry, which has been screened at international festivals and featured on Button Poetry. Eleni’s digital home is: and you can find her on Instagram @elenicay