22. ilb 07. - 17.09.2022

Yvon Le Men

Yvon Le Men was born in 1953. He began writing poetry as a young man. Since the publication of his first book, »Vie« in 1974, he has devoted himself professionally to the written and spoken word. Rooted in Brittany and its culture, he is the author of a large number of poetic works (»L’échappée blanche,« 1991; »Le jardin des tempêtes«, 2000; et al.). The beginning of his career was greatly influenced by political events in Brittany: for years he was involved in protests against the nuclear power station in Plogoff. Construction of the station was indeed called off in the early 80s.

In his first prose work, »Le petit tailleur de short« (1996) the author describes his upbringing on the coast of Brittany. In brief, lyrical episodes, the author conjures up memories: »And then there was also Spring. The time of flower buds and blouse buttons that sometimes open in the cinema or the farthest corners of the school yard. The hand’s long journey before it reaches the bodice. I can still see the bodice and the tender breasts in love’s first breeze, sending clothing and meadows into disarray.«

His latest novel, »Si tu me quittes, je m’en vais« (2009) tells the at-times humorous love story of a 25-year-old Breton poet and a former call-girl from Belgium. After their initial passion wanes, the conflicts between two people from two different countries emerge.

In May 2009, Le Men’s early poems from the years 1971 to 1976 were published in the collection, »Vingt ans«. Le Men has initiated several poetry congresses and forums in Brittany. Moreover, he travels around the world as an agent of poetry. Until recently, he wrote a weekly column entitled »Around the World in 80 Poems« for France’s most-read newspaper »Ouest-France«. He has made records and CDs with musicians such as Melaine Favennec, Gérard Delahaye and Patrick Ewen. He works with children in schools and has written children’s books such as »Ouvrez la porte aux loups« (1994) and »Douze mois et toi« (2005).

He has been awarded numerous prizes including the »Prix Brassens« and been named a »Chevalier des arts et lettres.« His work has been translated into many languages. Yvon Le Men lives in Lannion, France.

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