Merokean Stanley Barkan, center, recently received the Shabdaguchha International Poetry Journal’s Lifetime Achievement Award “for his outstanding contribution to poetry and publishing poets from around the world.” The ceremony took place in August at the International Poetry Festival at Queens Central Public Library in Jamaica.
Barkan, a retired New York City schools poetry teacher and founder of the Cross-Cultural Communications publishing house, has published the work of dozens of poets from around the world, always in more than one language. At the same time, Barkan has published several of his own volumes of poetry, which are often accompanied by illustrations by his artist wife, Bebe. His most recent poetry book is “Raisins with Almonds,” which is published in English and Sicilian. The book explores Barkan’s Jewish heritage and his love of Sicily.