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Ex-Voto: Poems of Adélia Prado

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Ex-Voto: Poems of Adélia Prado by Adélia Prado and Translated by Ellen Doré Watson

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Ex-Voto: Poems of Adélia Prado
Ellen Doré Watson
Adélia Prado
Photo by A.D.W.

$19.95 Paperback
ISBN: 978-1-936797-30-1
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“Adélia Prado’s most recent collection of poems, once more in Ellen Doré Watson’s superbly energetic and natural English, is nothing like any poetry I know in our present moment. Her humor, her dancing solidity, her joy in being alive — I think back to Chaucer, and the poems of Grace Paley. Prado is similarly voluble, playful, down to earth, and cheerful; and she seems to have an uncannily easy-going, even merry relationship with God and all his family. She has given us a perfectly crystalline ex-voto.” —Jean Valentine

Ex-Voto is the second collection of Prado’s poetry translated by Ellen Doré Watson. Their previous collaborative volume, The Alphabet in the Park: Selected Poems (Wesleyan University Press, 1990), was abundantly praised:

“The life captured in Prado’s poems is convulsive: from a dark corner of despair she can rocket to pure joy in one line… This is poetry at its hottest and most naked…” — James Tate

“A major poet of the Americas. In Watson’s hands, Prado’s work arrives in English as if it had never left Portuguese. I send… bouquets of gratitude.” — Carolyn Forché


Ex-Voto calls us to relish the body, but to humble and mortify the soul. Prado lashes out at pomposity and dishonesty, including her own … preferring a frank and contradictory extravagance that may or may not be divine, and is unquestionably human.” — Kate Schapira, Rain Taxi
“The Brazilian poet Adélia Prado talks to Jesus the way most people talk to their neighbors. She calls him Jonathan. She tells him, ‘you’re so good to us,/ roses, removable dentures/ tufts of grass like tiny palm trees.’ Watson lovingly recreates all the candor and incantatory music in these offbeat poems. There is never a day that can’t be improved with a few lines by Adélia Prado.”
— Idra Novey, “My Poetry Picks for 2013,” The Poetry Foundation’s Harriet the Blog

“Such intensities are exactly what Brazilian poet Adélia Prado presents us with in Ex-Voto. This is the second collection of her poetry to be translated by the American poet Ellen Doré Watson, whose lyrical yet colloquially beautiful English captures the range of tonal energies of Prado’s work.” — Fred Marchant, at Ron Slate’s On the Seawall

“Whether one is a Christian or not, the sheer ardor of Prado’s spiritual journey in Ex-Voto will carry one to a heightened level of awareness about what it means to exist in the world. Prado has a voice that is singular and romantic, and her poetry expresses all the beauty and agony experienced by a mystic.” — Sonja James, The Journal of West Virginia