Iain Galbraith, born in Glasgow in 1956, grew up in Arrochar and studied Modern Languages and Comparative Literature at the universities of Cambridge, Freiburg and Mainz. His poems have appeared in many journals and anthologies, including New Writing Scotland, Poetry Review, Irish Pages, The Times Literary Supplement and PN Review, and, in German translation, in the German and Austrian journals Akzente and Manuskripte. His first collection, The True Height of the Ear, was published by Arc in 2018.
His work as editor includes an anthology of Austrian poetry in English, The Night Begins with a Question (Carcanet/Scottish Poetry Library, 2007), a substantial anthology of 20th-century Scottish poetry in German, Beredter Norden. He edited Michael Hamburger’s essays and poetry in German translation, published by Folio Verlag in the volumes Pro Domo (2007) and Letzte Gedichte (2009). Galbraith has also edited works by such major Scottish authors as Robert Louis Stevenson and Walter Scott for a German classics series. In 2013, he contributed to editing an anthology of nineteen international poets, with translations from seven languages and a common thread of migration, Oxford Poets 2013 (Carcanet).
His work as a translator of poetry to and from English includes, most recently, prize-winning versions of Jan Wagner’s poetry in Self-portrait with a Swarm of Bees (Arc, 2015) and versions of John Burnside’s poems, published by Hanser as Anweisungen für eine Himmelsbestattung in 2016 and in 2017, he translated Esther Kinsky’s novel, River (Fitzcarraldo Editions).
In 2010 Galbraith held a Research Fellowship at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities at the University of Edinburgh, where he researched the ‘impossible translation’; in 2014-5 he taught the Poetics of Translation at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna. He has won a handful of prizes for literary translation: the John Dryden Translation Prize in 2004, the Stephen Spender Prize in 2014, the Popescu European Poetry Translation Prize in 2015, and in 2016, the Schlegel-Tieck Prize.
Read the poems
Meet the translator interview: https://lizzysiddal.wordpress.com/2020/03/26/meet-the-translator-iain-galbraith/
‘Portal VII (Europa Gate)’ Reading: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dyqhjLT5fIs
‘No Man’s Land’ Journal: Iain Galbraith: https://www.no-mans-land.org/iain-galbraith/
Collaboration by Jan Wagner and Sinéad Morrisey, translated and read by Iain Galbraith: https://poetryandcovid.com/aiovg_videos/collaboration-by-jan-wagner-and-sinead-morrisey-translated-and-read-by-iain-galbraith/