Lyubomir Levchev's Poetry Achieves Acclaim in the U.S.

Lyubomir Levchev’s Ashes of Light: New and Selected Poems received rave reviews from critics and poets alike.

Library Journal noted that he is “a populist who does not hesitate to raise his voice against oppression” and that “he is as adept with a soft touch, turning out stirring lyrics of love and loss.” And The Bookwatch noted, “Gracing readers with the slight of tongue and diligent touch of realism. Ashes of Light confronts life with vividly wording images and verse.”


Fellow poets in the U.S. were also deeply moved by his work. John Balaban noted, “Levchev is a world-class poet of irony, historical depth, humor, and great compassion, watching with wistful amusement, as in his celebrated ‘Roofs,' as the world shifts beneath his feet.”

And Richard Harteis and William Meredith, long-time friends of Bulgarian literature had this to say about the book and its accompanying artwork: "In Ashes of Light the world-renowned poet Lyubomir Levchev collaborates with the younger artist, Mark McKee, who has, nevertheless, also mastered his craft and is working at the peak of his powers. Spanning nearly five decades, the collection documents an extraordinary life in poetry. Levchev's is a unique voice—a poet, like his native Bulgaria caught between past and future, east and west who ultimately transcends this polarity. At times sad, bemused, giddy, angry, mystified, awestruck and wise, it is often a lonely voice; and when there is no audience, he is content to sing to the stars. ‘Real happiness,' he tells us, ‘is as scattered throughout our lives / as life perhaps is scattered / throughout the universe.' Like Shelley or other great Romantics, he speaks to us directly, a lyrical leap out of space and time. He witnesses the world anew like the old soldier in the exquisite, ‘Garden Before Paradise,' having hidden all his pain beneath a simple pride. Like Adam naming the creatures of a shaman creating reality by his testimony, he sees and feels for us with a divine nostalgia. In the East it is said that, ‘between one person and another there is only light.' The world is so much richer for the light that shines in this work."

More information about Lyubomir Levchev can be found at the Curbstone Press web site ( http://www.curbstone.org ) where the book can be ordered on-line.

Ashes of Light: New and Selected Poems , Lyubomir Levchev, original paperback, poetry, translated by Valentin Krustev and Jack Harte, art work by Mark McKee, 124 pages, $14.95. ISBN: 1-931896-30-5.