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Mark Tardi

Writer, Translator & Person


Airport music
Euclid Shudders

In the Press

Tardi writes with a musicality and a geometry in motion. If music could freeze and paper hexagons could move, they
might approximate Tardi’s physics of poetry . . . Tardi’s book meditates on cruelty and our own hollow silences, wondering if there is a place for lyricism in a world where Sandy Hook and atrocities in Syria are the new normal. Tardi has a singing ear, even when atrocity and violence overwhelm and stupefy the senses.

Mark Tardi works at the intersection of American and Polish culture . . . the present music plays in the tension between impalpable "air" and solid "port," between a single focus (Sean Scully's stripes) and shifting directions of torque (Lee Bontecou), between hope stretching outward and implosion of infinite regress. It is, to quote Jennifer Moxley's definition of the poem, "a bridge of half measures on the way to the possible."

Mark Tardi's poetry gives language back to that inanimate mass from which it, and we, originated . . . Tardi's poems exhale from the apparently insensate and resign the animate to perpetual motion. In this universe of receding matter and pulsing energy, Mark Tardi sets out to locate those "unpronounced angles" which make up the invisible but inextricable geometry of our lives.

Sarah Ruhl,

on The Circus of Trust

Rosmarie Waldrop,

on Airport music

Craig Watson,

on Euclid Shudders


Mark Tardi is originally from Chicago and he earned his MFA from Brown University. His awards include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, Harry Ransom Center, Millay Colony for the Arts, and the Vermont Studio Center. His publications include the books The Circus of Trust, Airport music, and Euclid Shudders.

His writing and translations have appeared widely in periodicals such as Denver Quarterly, The Millions, Asymptote, Aufgabe, Berlin Quarterly, Chicago Review, Notre Dame Review,  and elsewhere.

His translation of The Squatters' Gift by Robert Rybicki (Dalkey Archive) and Faith in Strangers by Katarzyna Szaulińska (Toad Press/Veliz Books) were published in 2021.  He has also translated work by Olga Hund, Zofia Skrzypulec, Aleksandra Byrska, Kinga Piotrowiak-Junkiert, Miron Białoszewski, Kacper Bartczak, Monika Mosiewicz, and Przemysław Owczarek from the Polish.

A former Fulbright scholar, he lives with his family in a village in central Poland and is on faculty at the University of Łódź.

In The Press

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