Remembering Alda Merini

A year from the death of the celebrated poet, Mondadori publishes the first complete collection of her poetry and prose

In recognition of the work of the much-loved poet Alda Merini, an offbeat and moving personality who was able to speak directly to people’s hearts, Mondadori is publishing the first anthology that brings together all of the poetry and prose of a leading protagonist of Italian twentieth century literature: Alda Merini, Il suono dell’ombra. Poesie e prose 1953-2009.

From the most intriguing, engaging and well-known of her masterpieces to forgotten pages, this collection is accompanied by an extensive critical and biographical appreciation by Ambrogio Borsani. The early collections of poetry, La presenza di Orfeo, Nozze Romane and Paura di Dio are collected for the first time and the book also includes the more recent and familiar collections, such as Vuoto d’amore, Superba è la notte and her last book, Il Carnevale della Croce, along with a number of rarities. Alongside the autobiographical L’altra verità and Lettere al dottor G., that give an account of a heartbreaking descent into the abyss of an asylum, also her complete short stories are included, from Il ladro Giuseppe to the lyrical sonatas of Delirio amoroso and Il tormento delle figure. A section of biting and highly amusing aphorisms, provide evidence of almost twenty years’ work. The book also features a small number of unpublished poems.

On 2 November, to commemorate Alda Merini a year after her death and to mark the publication of the anthology, Licia Maglietta will give a reading of some of the poet’s work at the Auditorium in Milan (Largo Mahler 1, at 6.30 pm – admittance free).