We joined Adriana X. Jacobs to discuss and read poems from her translation of Vaan Nguyen’s The Truffle Eye. Vaan Nguyen has been described as "a veritable juggler of Hebrew," a poet whose work radically remixes world classics and pop culture, the personal and the political, past and present. Born in 1982 in Israel to refugees of the Vietnam War, Nguyen's debut collection The Truffle Eye addresses questions of identity and cultural legacy from what she has described as "points of emotion and shock." Her poems travel far and wide, between Tel Aviv and Hanoi, taking in views of Manhattan, Paris, Milan, Salzburg, Pasadena and more. Through these movements, Nguyen reflects on how our lives take shape in the daily migrations we make between lovers, family, work, and the places we call home.
Adriana X. Jacobs is an associate professor of modern Hebrew literature at the University of Oxford, where she specializes on contemporary Israeli poetry and translation. Her translations of Hebrew poetry have appeared in various print and online venues, including Zeek, Metamorphoses, Truck, Poetry International, Gulf Coast and MQR.