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Poetry and Poets of Poland


George8600
15 Apr 2010 #1
So one thing that I have always been into, is Polish poetry. I don't know what it is, it just grasps me and connects with me better than any other modern poetry. I am also a lover of classical poetry where the French and Germans might come in, but I too am keen on Polish classics as well. So any poetry readers or considering to be?

Has anyone ever read from Symborska? Her modern/post-modern poetry won Poland a nobel prize in literature. Moreover, any other very famous ones? I have had the pleasures of meeting Jacek Dehnel and Tomasz Różycki in person and they too are very well known in modern Polish poetry.

For anyone beginning or already into it, I highly recommend the popular book 'Six Polish Poets' which is an anthology of the best of modern polish poetry and is written bilingually in English and Polish.

It ships internationally I believe, and you should be able to find it in any bookstore in Poland if you live there.
Torq
15 Apr 2010 #2
There's a thread about Zbigniew Herbert and Polish poetry in general
in the Polish-speaking section of the forum:

polishforums.com/rozmowy-po-polsku-41/zbigniew-herbert-najwiekszy-polski-poeta-xx-wieku-43213
noreenb
16 Apr 2010 #3
For a lover of classical poetry Jan Kasprowiczmight be interesting:

English page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_Kasprowicz
AdamKadmon
18 Dec 2010 #4
Merged:Piła (wiersz Bolesława Leśmiana) - próba tłumaczenia.

Tłumaczenie moje jest dość kiepskie. Może ktoś spróbuje przetłumaczyć lepiej, choćby jedną zwrotkę. Trzy ostatnie zwrotki są jeszcze nieprzetłumaczone.

Piła - The Saw (Bolesław Leśmian)

Idzie lasem owa zmora, co ma kibić piły,
A zębami chłopców nęci i zna czar mogiły.


Boys enticing is the queen - the saw in the woods of nightmares,
She knows well the charm of graves, with her lureing teeth she glares.


Upatrzyła parobczyna na schyłku doliny:
"Ciebie pragnę, śnie jedyny - dyny moje, dyny!


The saw saw a swain, downhill all the way:
"Thou I want, thou I need tra-la-la, oh, yea!


Pocałunki dla cię, chłopcze, w ostrą stal uzbroję,
Błysk - niedobłysk na wybłysku - oto zęby moje!


Let me embrace thee, oh boy, I arm thee in arms of steel,
Flash - underflash in outflash - my teeth are here!


Oczaruj się tym widokiem, coś go nie widywał,
Ośnijże się tymi snami, coś ich nie wyśniwał!


Enthrall yourself with the view, you haven't yet seen,
Endream yourself with the dreams, you haven't yet dreamed!


Połóż głowę na tym chabrze i połóż na maku,
Pokochaj mnie w polnym znoju i w śródleśnym ćmaku!"


Put your head down there on the corn and poppy flower,
Love me in the fields of toil and where is no plower!"


"Będę ciebie kochał mocą, z którą się mocuję,
Będę ciebie tak całował, jak nikt nie całuje!


"I will love you with full power with which I can cope,
I will kiss you and empower like you never hopped!


Będę gardził dziewczętami, com je miał w swej woli,
Bo z nich każda od miłości łka, jak od niedoli.


My love for girls, whom I've enjoyed; now, I will bury,
Because love makes them cry, as if love were a misery.


Chcę się ciałem przymiarkować do nowej pieszczoty,
Chcę się wargą wypurpurzyć dla krwawej ochoty!


I am eager to a new caress - try my body too excess,
I want my lip to blush with purple in a bloody mess!


Chcę dla twojej, dla zabawy tak się przeinaczyć,
Abym mógł się na twych zębach dreszczami poznaczyć!"


I want, just for play, to change my shape in such a way,
So as to make marks of my thrills on your teeth today!"


Zazgrzytała od rozkoszy, naostrzyła zęby:
"Idę w miłość, jak chadzałam na leśne wyręby!"


She began to gnash her teeth in rapture, sharpened them and said:
"Well, today, I won't cut trees. Instead, I'll make love straight ahead!"


Zaszumiała ponad nimi ta wierzba złotocha -
Poznał chłopiec, czym w uścisku jest stal, gdy pokocha!


The wind blew over through the willow tree -
A steel grasp of love, found him out - the laddie!


Całowała go zębami na dwoje, na troje:
"Hej, niejedną z ciebie duszę w zaświaty wyroję!"


She kissed him with her teeth into two, into three:
"Hey, I'll cut out of thee many a Mon Chéri et Mon Ami!"


Poszarpała go pieszczotą na nierówne części:
"Niech wam, moje wy drobiażczki, w śmierci się poszczęści!"


With caresses she tore him in parts small and bulky:
"May you, little ones, in your death be lucky!"


Rozrzuciła go podzielnie we sprzeczne krainy:
"Niechaj Bóg was pouzbiera, ludzkie omieciny!"


She scattered him around within a mile span:
"Let God gather you: the sweepings of a man!"


Same chciały się uciułać w kształt wielce bywały,
Jeno znaleźć siebie w świecie wzajem nie umiały.


They themselves tried to gather the beloved shape,
Got it only to, however, into a bad scrape.


Zaczęło się od mrugania ległych w kurzu powiek -
Nie wiadomo, kto w nich mrugał, ale już nie człowiek!


It began with lids blinking, lying in the dust -
Who blinked them? Man who'd lived his life just!


Głowa, dudniąc, mknie po grobli, szukająca karku,
Jak ta dynia, gdy się dłoniom umknie na jarmarku.


The rumbling head, seeking its neck, is dashing on a causeway,
Such as the pumpkin at a market place that slips the hands away.


Piersią, sobie przywłaszczoną, jar grabieżczo dyszy,
Uchem, wbiegłym na wierzchołek, wierzba coś tam słyszy!

Oczy, wzajem rozłączne, tleją bez połysku,
Jedno brzęczy w pajęczynie, drugie śpi w mrowisku.

A ta ręka, co się wzniosła w próżnię ponad drogą,
Znakiem krzyża przeżegnała nie wiadomo kogo!


Trzy ostatnie zwrotki - propozycja tłumaczenia:

Piersią, sobie przywłaszczoną, jar grabieżczo dyszy,
Uchem, wbiegłym na wierzchołek, wierzba coś tam słyszy!


The ravine down there with the chest, his seizured plunder, breathes under,
With her ear up on top the tree, the willow hears voices out there!


Oczy, wzajem rozłączne, tleją bez połysku,
Jedno brzęczy w pajęczynie, drugie śpi w mrowisku.


The eyes, each other apart, fade quietly away without glossy shine,
One eye in a cobweb buzzes; other in an anthill sleeps benign.


A ta ręka, co się wzniosła w próżnię ponad drogą,
Znakiem krzyża przeżegnała nie wiadomo kogo!


And the hand, which has lifted in a void over the track to
make the sign of the cross over... Goodness only knows who!


Poprawki:

Piersią, sobie przywłaszczoną, jar grabieżczo dyszy,
Uchem, wbiegłym na wierzchołek, wierzba coś tam słyszy!


The ravine with the chest, his seizured plunder, breathes under,
With an ear up on top the tree, the willow hears voices out there!


A ta ręka, co się wzniosła w próżnię ponad drogą,
Znakiem krzyża przeżegnała nie wiadomo kogo!


And the hand, which has lifted in a void above the forest track to
make the sign of the cross over, blesses... Goodness only knows who!


Nähe des Geliebten.............................Nearness of the Beloved One

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe**********Translation by Hyde Flippo

baczynski.art.pl/wiersze/363-W.html

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krzysztof_Kamil_Baczyński
Lodz_The_Boat
30 Dec 2010 #5
I once opened a similar thread =D ... years ago I guess =).
malwinaflower
30 Dec 2010 #6
I love romantic poetry of Halina Poświatowska, Maria Pawlikowska-Jasnorzewska, Bolesław Leśmian, but also more metaphoric poems of Wisława Szymborska. I think that poetry of Szymborska is hard to translate into other languages because its full of allegories and ambiguity.

I love Marek Grechuta and Ewa Demarczyk for their poetic souls and beautiful interpretations of poems.
AdamKadmon
30 Dec 2010 #7
Wisława Szymborska

Nothing Twice by Wislawa Szymborska

translated by Clare Cavanagh and Stanislaw Baranczak

Nothing can ever happen twice.
In consequence, the sorry fact is
that we arrive here improvised
and leave without the chance to practice.

Even if there is no one dumber,
if you're the planet's biggest dunce,
you can't repeat the class in summer:
this course is only offered once.

math.univ-lille1.fr/~alvarez/Szymborska.html

Polish original:

Nic dwa razy się nie zdarza
i nie zdarzy. Z tej przyczyny
zrodziliśmy się bez wprawy
i pomrzemy bez rutyny.

Choćbyśmy uczniami byli
najtępszymi w szkole świata,
nie będziemy repetować
żadnej zimy ani lata.

...

poezjaa.info/index.php?p=2&a=20&u=380

Marek Grechuta

UNCERTAINTY by Adam Mickiewicz (1798-1855)

Away from thee I never weep nor sigh.
And lose I not my mind when thou art nigh.
But if for a while I have no word with thee.
There's something missing, someone I must see.
I wonder, yearning thus for days on end:
Art thou my love or maybe just a friend?


wolnelektury.pl/media/book/txt/mickiewicz-uncertainty.txt
Des Essientes
30 Dec 2010 #8
Being very fond of blondes, flowers and hemp I cite two of my favorite passages from Adam Mickiewicz's Pan Tadeusz:

The mass began. The little sanctuary could not contain the entire throng; the folk kneeled on the grass, gazing at the door of the chapel, and bared their heads. The white or yellow hair of the Lithuanian folk was gilded like a field of ripe grain; here and there a maiden's fair head, decked with fresh flowers or with peacock's feathers, and with ribbons flowing loose from her braided hair, blossomed among the men's heads like a corn-flower or poppy amid the wheat. The kneeling, many-coloured throng covered the plain, and at the sound of the bell, as though at a breath of wind, all heads bent down like ears of corn on a field.

In that thick, green, fragrant growth around the house there is a sure refuge for beasts and men. Often a hare, caught among the cabbages, leaps to find surer hiding in the hemp than in the shrubbery, for among the close-set stalks no greyhound can catch it, nor foxhound smell it out because of the strong odour. In the hemp a serving man, fleeing from the whip or the fist, sits quietly until his master has spent his wrath. And often even runaway peasant recruits, while the government is tracking them in the woods, are sitting in the hemp. And hence at the time of battles, forays, and confiscations, each side uses immense exertions to occupy a position in the hemp, which commonly extends forward to the walls of the mansion, and backward until it joins the hop fields, and thus covers their attack and retreat from the enemy.
AdamKadmon
31 Dec 2010 #9
2011 will by the year of 100th birth anniversary of Czesław Miłosz, who in a 1945 poem wrote:

Czesław Miłosz - Where the Sun Rises and Where it Sets

Could we have an English translation, please. This post may go in the bin otherwise.

"The Marry-go-round with Madonnas" is a ballad in which the poet is inspired by the folk culture from the surroundings of Warsaw. It describes an old dingy carousel at a small town fair. The poet sees the horses and varsovians riding on it, he compares the women to madonnas with children and soon the scene reminds him of pictures by Rafael and Leonardo da Vinci. Konieczny's music marvelously corresponds to the verses of the poem which symbolize the rhythm of the carousel.

As for translation, I couldn't find any. Białoszewski's poetry is very difficult to translate, certainly above my capabilities.
hague1cmaeron
1 Jan 2011 #10
Marek Grechuta

I like one of his songs in particular, there is another poem by Adam Asnik about youth, but I can't remember the title, does anybody else recall?
AdamKadmon
1 Jan 2011 #11
Adam Asnik

You mean Adam Asnyk



Miejcie nadzieję
hague1cmaeron
2 Jan 2011 #12
You mean Adam Asnyk

Yes I do(:

Unfortunately this is not the poem I had in mind): The one i had in mind is actually very similar in substance to Longfellow's 'A Psalm of life. What the Heart of the Young Man Said to the Psalmist'.
AdamKadmon
2 Jan 2011 #13
Longfellow's 'A Psalm of life.

A PSALM OF LIFE

WHAT THE HEART OF THE YOUNG MAN
SAID TO THE PSALMIST
chichimera
7 Feb 2011 #15
I like Zbigniew Herbert's poetry a lot. It seems to be quite Polish in its heroic hopeless faith in certain values :) But my favourite of all times is Bolesław Leśmian. Unfortunately I've come across only a very few translations - maybe due to the fact that the sound of words plays an important part, or maybe because he created a large number of his own words, not easily translated to other languages? But I find that obsessive relation between the sound and the meaning most fascinating and unique.
shaning
20 Jun 2013 #16
@malwinaflower: it would be nice to if you had mentioned the translator's.

Edward Stachura's poetry

That's what I'm reading last days. Found English version. Maybe some of you would enjoy.
[duszenko.northern.edu/stachura/] Stachura poetry

Wyspi

I liked it.. :) hes very imaginative.. brings the person into the sights he is
seen and the feelings he felt at that moment.. but since is all in words..

Ive Written Poetry,, its ( two of them so far) in the library of congress.
but thats all .. the rest are put away.
pawian
6 Aug 2023 #17
Interesting translation of Locomotive by Julian Tuwim. The original poem is written in amazing Polish which nicely renders the whizzing and puffing sounds of the engine. The translator, Michael Dembinski, managed to retain it in English very well.

[...]
It stands and wheezes, it groans and gnashes
Its boiling belly stuffed with hot ashes:
Arrrgh, what torture!
Phew, what a scorcher!
Panting and puffing!
Hissing and huffing!
It's barely gasping, it's barely breathing,
And still its fireman more coal keeps on heaping.

[...]

Slowly at first, like a tortoise just waking
Strains the engine, every single joint aching.
But it jerks at the wagons and pulls with great zeal,
It turns, and it turns, wheel after wheel.
It gathers momentum and takes up the chase
As it thunders and hammers and speeds up the pace.
[...]
More
jeziorki.blogspot.com/2008/08/tuwims-lokomotywa-in-english.html
Lyzko
7 Aug 2023 #18
My favorite poet remains Jaroslaw Iwaszkiewicz!
Novichok
7 Aug 2023 #19
Iwaszkiewicz was bisexual and homoerotic; those themes are present in his poetry and prose works. In his diaries he describes himself as a "homosexual"...

It never fails. If Lyzko likes it, it will stink if you dig deep enough.
No, thanks. You can have him...
jon357
8 Aug 2023 #20
Jaroslaw Iwaszkiewicz!

He is excellent.

I prefer Tuwim, and the translation that Pawian posted (the translator is slightly known to me and a few other posters here, and as I recall reads this forum sometimes) is absolutely spot on.

Iwaszkiewicz was bisexual and homoerotic

You've just described a huge chunk of the world's literary corpus.\
Novichok
8 Aug 2023 #21
Lit is a tool to tell stories, not to dazzle readers with how great a word juggler the author is.
Words that rhyme make me physically nauseous. Like twirling objects...

Poetry, like roses, is for chicks and was invented by guys who want to get laid but don't have enough money for a movie and dinner.
jon357
8 Aug 2023 #22
Words that rhyme make me physically nauseous. Like twirling objects...

So much of human life makes you 'physically nauseous' that it's a miracle you have any stomach contents left.

was invented by guys who want to get laid but don't have enough money for a movie and dinner.

Tell that to Homer, Sophocles and Sappho.

Poetry is universal and here in Poland, there is both bad and good.
Novichok
8 Aug 2023 #23
Poetry is universal and here in Poland,

Because men want to get laid everywhere.

I don't recall a love poem written by a woman to a man.

Poetry is a tool to bullsh*it and dazzle, not inform, by prioritizing form ahead of the message. Better bullsh*iters write better poetry.

So much of human life makes you 'physically nauseous'

Hey, a-hole, did I make any personal comments about you?
jon357
8 Aug 2023 #24
Because men want to get laid everywhere.

Have you met many poets or philosophers?

Most of them look like they need some fresh air and exercise.

Hey, a-hole,

Grow up.
Atch
8 Aug 2023 #25
I don't recall a love poem written by a woman to a man.

That's because you're not very well read.
johnny reb
8 Aug 2023 #26
Hey, a-hole, did I make any personal comments about you?

The irony....
Are you really so dim ? :-(

I don't recall a love poem written by a woman to a man.

Here genius, educate yourself for once.
The 10 most famous classical love poems for him written by a woman

ideapod.com/love-poems-for-him/

Grow up.

He's a thick-skinned Polish reject which makes that impossible.
Novichok
8 Aug 2023 #27
That's because you're not very well read.

Name one. Then compare the total number of love poems written by both genders for the other one.
You missed a hyphen.
pawian
8 Aug 2023 #28
the translation that Pawian posted

There is another one, by Mr Walter Whipple.

Let`s see the same part of the poem as before:

[...]
Huffing and puffing and panting and smelly,
Fire belches forth from her fat cast iron belly.
Poof, how she's burning,
Oof, how she's boiling,
Puff, how she's churning,
Huff, how she's toiling.
She's fully exhausted and all out of breath,
Yet the coalman continues to stoke her to death.
[...]
More slowly - than turtles - with freight - on their - backs,
The drowsy - steam engine - sets off - down the tracks.
She chugs and she tugs at her wagons with strain,
As wheel after wheel slowly turns on the train.
She doubles her effort and quickens her pace,
And rambles and scrambles to keep up the race.
[...]


More
mission.net/poland/warsaw/literature/poems/locomoti.htm

I must say I like it even more than the previous one.
Atch
8 Aug 2023 #29
You missed a hyphen.

The term 'well read' does not require a hyphen.
pawian
8 Aug 2023 #30
Check the recording of the poem, in Polish. by three famous actors. Amasing.



Listening to it, if you are a foreigner, you will hear how Polish sounds. Like a traditional kettle boiling and hissing. :):) Abundance of hissing sounds at 3:15


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