Joseph Olenin’s Coat

By coincidence, a literary journal named The Cossack Review has accepted my translation of a story set in Russia and Ukraine. There are no cossacks in the story, but there is a quirky Russian man who falls in love with a coat. He is alone, winter is long, his sojourn in the Russian countryside is monotonous and tedious, and now he is besotted with a velvet and sable coat that is not his.

You can read ‘Joseph Olenin’s Coat’, my translation of ‘Le Manteau de Joseph Olénine’ by Eugène-Melchior de Vogüé (or Marie-Eugène-Melchior, Vicomte de Vogüé!), in Issue 6 of The Cossack Review, out now. The original was published in 1886 in an illustrated review, Les Lettres et les Arts. Above, in the header, is a part of the decorative first page as it appeared in the Paris journal. And here’s one of the images that appeared mid-story:

'Contemplation' by M. H. Gray, illustration in 'Le Manteau de Joseph Olénine' in 'Les Lettres et les Arts', Paris, 1 July 1886

‘Contemplation’ by M. H. Gray, illustration for ‘Le Manteau de Joseph Olénine’ in ‘Les Lettres et les Arts’, Paris, 1 July 1886

And here’s the cover of the spring 2016 issue of The Cossack Review (not from Paris, nor from Russia, but from America):

Issue 6 features new prose, poetry, and translation from twenty-five contributors and three translators.

A few weeks ago I told a friend that I do read Facebook but I never write on it. Well, today – never say never – I wrote on it for the first time, after reading, somewhere, recommendations for promoting one’s own writing. Apparently I was mad not to be taking advantage of it.

I much prefer blogging. I’ve enjoyed writing this post today, hunting down the picture and thinking about my words. Facebook seems too narrow by comparison; but perhaps I should look at it like one of those poster pillars we see in city centres, where people can legally post bills. So today, I posted a bill advertising the journal that has very kindly published my translation.

If you read ‘Joseph Olenin’s Coat’, let me know.


5 thoughts on “Joseph Olenin’s Coat

  1. It’s on my “to read list” already, Trish, thank you for the lead. I’m thinking, as you do, that FB is lightweight. I joined so I didn’t miss photos of the grandchildren that somehow missed the mail 😉 Again, I read more than I write, but occasionally give the blog a plug. Now, I’m on my way over to “friend” you – hope you won’t be offended 😉


  2. I had no idea how to help you find the page on FB, so I asked my son and in a roundabout way I found your page where I could click and make the connection. Now my son’s telling me to make an author page which is public. Groan.
    Thanks for liking my post about Joseph’s coat.


    • 😝ah, when we need our children, or even the grandchildren 😄
      My pleasure. I spent my US$5.00 to get The Cossack Review 6th ed, but the link seems to have failed – led me to the subscribe page again – no chance them getting another $5 😂 I will let you know if/when I get a response from the help desk 🙃


  3. Thanks for going to this much trouble. I haven’t tried ordering one because I’m hoping The Cossack Review sends me a copy as one of its contributors, otherwise I’ll have to spend five American dollars like you. Let me know if the review turns up in your mailbox. I’m also wondering if there’s an extra charge for OS postage…


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