JOHNHORVATH Jr : SMUGGLER'S DREAM
KELLY JEAN WHITE : Wonder
CHRISTOPHER BARNES : Buster Keaton
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JOHNHORVATH Jr SMUGGLER'S DREAM
Previously published in Dekalb Literary Arts Journal
KELLY JEAN WHITE Wonder
poetryrepairs #209 15,02:024
CHRISTOPHER BARNES Buster Keaton
poetryrepairs #209 15,02:024
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Jeff Friedman and DZVINIA ORLOWSKY announce the publication of a co-translation from Polish of Memorials: A Selection. Mieczyslaw Jastrun is regarded among the most respected Polish poets of the 20th century, and it is 'our great privilege to introduce in English a selection of strongest and most haunting lyric poems'. If you have a moment, please check out http://www.lavenderink.org/content/diag/294-memorials. Praise for Mieczyslaw Jastrun and Memorials
There is great sorrow in these later poems of the remarkable Polish poet Mieczyslaw Jastrun whose great mastery of form and metaphysical thought are apparent throughout. The beauty of these spare lines and images both surprise and deepen the mystery of his complete engagement with experience: “Chrysanthemums, purple/ with anger, almost disappeared in shadow,” “the cup extinguishes the drinker,” “Ancient deaths/linger/in vineyard branches./Are these not stony gorges?/Is nature dead?/Don’t eat the bread/and the water isn’t for drinking.” Experience for Jastrun was a matter of faith as well as intimate revelation, not to mention survival. These are truly extraordinary poems. Hats off to their translators, who have somehow managed to bring forth both his “cold fire” and “tree of sorrow/ rooted deep in my heart.” —Philip Schultz
Quintilian in Institutio Oratoria writes, “For I do not want translation to be mere paraphrase, but a struggle and rivalry over the same meanings.” In a similar vein, ORLOWSKY and Friedman render Mieczyslaw Jastrun into a new idiom to convey the inexplicable. As in the theological definition of translation as an act of miraculous displacement, these translations transform and enthrall the originals. Through these transformations, Jastrun’s poems return as dybbuks to fulfill their mission, to ask crucial questions: “Can we ever fully comprehend mist, arctic lichen, hoary young planets?” “Has the word become flesh?” The mullein and broom, birches and poplars and other “paragraphs of greenery” will lead us through Jastrun’s incantations. Memorials is a prayer of outcasts and exiled kings. A prayer which redeems the omnipresent trees into crosses where “every sound is a form of silence”; “where the shade of poplar mutes us like a finger held to the lips.” In these wild, extravagant lines, I feel humanity, I feel faith.