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Because of his close association with the post-revolutionary artistic fervor of the Soviet Union in the 1920s, Vladimir Mayakovsky's work has largely been interpreted and translated first and foremost within a political context. But he was also an entirely original, fiercely inventive writer, his poems suffused with neologisms, strange rhythms and rhymes, and all manner of peculiar formal effects. In Selected Poems, James McGavran comes closer than any previous English edition in replicating the experience of reading Mayakovsky in the original Russian, finding precisely the rights words to convey the poet's idiosyncratic vision. Along with an introduction that clearly outlines the complex issues that surround any effort to understand Mayakovsky and his work, McGavran's extensive annotations illuminate the references scattered through poems deeply engaged with their historical moment. This volume will introduce a new generation of readers to an essential voice in modern poetry.