From Portuguese Heritage Publications of California
Expanded English-Portuguese bilingual edition
MY CALIFORNIAN FRIENDS: POETRY
Translated by Katharine F. Baker and Diniz Borges
'I am not a banker, my dear friend'
Interview with Vasco by Afonso Quintal in Correio dos Açores, 8 April 2010
Translation and portrait by Katharine Baker
CA: Name, birthplace, city and country where you reside?
VPC: Vasco Manuel Pimentel Pereira da Costa, born on Rua Direita in Angra do Heroísmo in the middle of the last century, residing of course in the nation of Portugal.
CA: What was the first book you read?
VPC: Besides Cartilha Maternal [a series of reading primers] by João de Deus, I suppose, if memory serves, O Macaco sem Rabo [The Monkey Without a Tail] – which, as everyone knows, turned out to be a self-made monkey, from whose paradigm I ran like the plague!
CA: When did you feel the call to writing?
VPC: I was the one who called writing to me!
CA: Are there any of your books that you would like to rewrite?
VPC: All of them – but I won’t be doing any of them over.
CA: What books have you published, and which one is the most recent?
VPC: I shall be as modest as possible and indicate only my latest: My Californian Friends, now in its third edition, which is bilingual.
CA: Name a book by an Azorean writer that you would have liked to author.
VPC: My great-great-grandfather taught me never to make babies with someone else’s wife.
CA: How do you get along with other writers?
VPC: Very well, with the proviso that (how I detest this syntactic neo-jargon) some are more worth reading than knowing, while others are more worth knowing than reading. But, as a general rule, it is good both to read and know them.
CA: Do you think you will get rich as a writer?
VPC: Undoubtedly, if your concept of wealth coincides with mine… But I am not a banker, my dear friend.
CA: What book would you never recommend to a friend?
VPC: The question in the singular precludes a plural reply.
CA: What book would you like to abandon and that you still haven’t written?
VPC: The one I’m writing.
Some of the first books Vasco read as a child:
My Californian Friends: Poetry, by Vasco Pereira da Costa
From the Colecção Décima Ilha (Tenth Island Collection)
Portuguese Heritage Publications of California
P.O. Box 32517, San Jose, California 95152
ISBN 978-0-9789994-7-6 / Library of Congress Catalog Number 2009925325
Click here to order My Californian Friends now.
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