Caught by the River

Pessimism is for Lightweights: The Life of One Poem

1st October 2020

Yesterday, Rough Trade Books unveiled an Old English Translation by Emily Cotman of Salena Godden’s Pessimism is for Lightweights. Now, describing the project as ‘an act of trying to come together and create some small attempt at unity on this planet’, the publisher is seeking further translations of the poem, inviting people from all over the world to translate Pessimism is for Lightweights into a language of their choosing.

‘We think translation is an essential literary endeavour over here at Rough Trade Books HQ—a means of access into the language, thinking and stories of other cultures, histories and experiences, we believe the act of translation can be a radical rejection of a homogenous literary culture’ they write, and we hasten to agree.  Details of how to submit a translation can be found here.

Purchases of Salena’s pamphlet from the Rough Trade Books shop will now include the Old English translation as an added bonus.