Tuesday, September 03, 2013

A stationmaster of words

Polish poet Tomasz Różycki is featured in Words without Borders' Black Markets issue.

Paweł Huelle writes "A Letter to a Young Poet: On Tomasz Różycki":
At last I had found the missing link of a language that could name and describe that which I was not able to express. And that which was an important, significant event in my memories of childhood, of vacation trips south, to my grandmother Maria's house in Mościce near Tarnów. Suddenly — and unexpectedly — Tomasz Różycki became a participant in them. A stationmaster of words. An interpreter of memory's labyrinth. An important poet. Very important.

Huelle draws a line to Różycki from the Polish renaissance and through Młoda Polska, brushed by Stefan Grabiński and T.S. Eliot, tracing Rilke.

Here are a few choice lines from the Różycki translations published in Words without Borders:

"The Guy Who Bought the World"
The guy who bought the world is out for a walk
down Thirty-seventh Street. No one in the least
suspects that the deal just took place and the stock
exchanges keep noting each little increase,

"In the Evening, Love"
Oh, how he likes it: the glass warming in hand,
the arrangement of object in an order
readily apparent only from a certain
height. Go ahead and solve the code for romance.

"This Is My Room"
Columbus was wrong. There’s no earth whatsoever
after sunset, a boat sails into the dead
of night and goes on and on forever:

Różycki recites his poetry in this clip from the Poetry Center Archives:

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