espèce, which translates most immediately in English as species (in the singular), was published by Le Temps des Cerises in 2017 on the occasion of the international poetry biennale of Val-de-Marne. The word espèce has the added implication of an invective or insult, in the expression espèce de, and so, for the purposes of this translation, the wonderfully polysemic title the likes, with its colloquial aspect and its gesturing toward the body, the corpse, likeness, resemblance, and counterpart, has been adopted. The following comments offer a condensate of notes provided by the author.
The book is dedicated to Timur Kacharava, an anti-specist militant assassinated by neo-Nazis in Saint Petersburg on November 13, 2005. The six poems published here are extracted from four of the seven parts of the book. “saint-marcel” comes from “fluides” (fluids), a series that follows the redirected coastal river, the Huveaune, which originates in the massif of Sainte Baume and empties at Marseille. Its polluted waters are redirected away from the beaches in the vicinity of its mouth and emptied into the Cortiou Calanque. “the young barbarian girl” is inscribed in the “sous-sols” (undergrounds) series, which refers to miners who extracted bauxite in the department of the Var, the principal deposit in France of bauxite, which was of international importance until World War I. “the sighthound” is inscribed in the “animales” series, the title of which can be read as the feminine plural form of the noun animal or its corresponding adjective. “la rue des abeilles” is of the same series. The poems “the life” and “the world” are from both ends of the “termes” (terms) series, in which each poem evolves from a single substantive to its termination.