Uladzimir Niakliaeu is one of the most prominent contemporary Belarusian writers, as well as a social and political activist. Although he wrote his first poetry in Russian, he later chose to write his native Belarusian. The former president of Belarusian PEN, he was also an opposition candidate for president in 2010, when he was jailed for his political activity. He was released the following year and remains under house arrest.
Valzhyna Mort was born in Minsk, Belarus, and moved to the United States in 2006. She is the author of the poetry collections Factory of Tears (Copper Canyon Press, 2008) and Collected Body (Copper Canyon Press 2012). She received the Lannan Foundation Literary Fellowship and the Bess Hokin Prize, as well as the 2005 Crystal of Vilenica Award in Slovenia and the 2008 Burda Poetry Prize in Germany. She lives in Washington, DC.