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Idris Tayeb

His book Gap to breath put him on the international poetry stage.

"Poets suffer to change the world because they are not satisfied with what they see."

He was born in Libya in 1952 and studied Communication Sciences and Journalism in Finland. On returning to his country, since 1968 he has worked as a journalist. In 1973 he was the press correspondent in Sweden and Finland. He writes poems, essays, short stories and art reviews.

He lived in Rome between 1992 and 2002 and was the cultural attaché to the Libyan Embassy in Italy and held the post of Professor of Arabic letters during four years. He has also been the Cultural attaché for the Libyan Embassy in New Dehli, India. His poems have been translated into German, Chinese, Spanish, English, Italian, Finnish, French and Swedish.

The Libyan poet got to know the country's prisons for ten years: "In prison there is no pen or paper. I used to write in my head and memorise everything," he explains. His five poetry books, amongst them Gap to breath (1997), have been translated into English, Spanish, Italian, Hindi and Chinese. His most recent personal anthology is called Fires of the sea, tenderness of the desert, translated into English by the author and published in New Delhi, in 2003.


Information on the website of the Medellin Poetry Festival

More information:

Article on the writer in The Hindu

Participation of the poet at the Medellin Poetry Festival