Lebanese poet and novelist, long-time Paris resident Vénus Khoury-Ghata is the author of twenty-two novels, including Une Maison aux bord des larmes, La Femme qui ne savait pas garder les hommes, and Le Facteur des Abruzzes, and nineeen collections of poems, most recently Gens de l’eau (Mercure de France, 2018), from which these poems are taken. Other collections of her poems available in English in Marilyn Hacker’s translation include Alphabets of Sand (Carcanet Press, 2008) and Where are the trees going? (Northwestern University Press, 2014). Recipient of the Académie Française prize in poetry in 2009, she was named an Officer of the Légion d’honneur the following year. She received the Prix Goncourt de poésie in 2011.