Selection of poems by one of the leading Slovenian authors of ⅩⅩ and ⅩⅩⅠ century.
In the 70’s of ⅩⅩ century in Šalamun’s poetry you might notice an influence of American poetry, especially authors connected with Beat Generation and „the New York School”. This influence was reflected in longer narrative forms which he used in his poetry. The result of his two-year visit to Mexico at the turn of 70’s and 80’s was the presence of motives from pre-Columbian cultures and hispanic poetry (e.g. Césara Vallejo), but also ecstasy and visionariness associated with Saint John of the Cross.
In the 80’s Šalamun, influenced by deconstruction and Lacan’s psychoanalysis, opened a dialogue with a younger generation of Slovenian poets. Šalamun has focused on the issues of relations and references within the language itself, which was fallowed by a complexity of poetic figures, that lead the critics to compare his poetry with baroque art. On the other hand, Šalamun confronted echoes of postmodernism with his own version of seeking transcendence, which was inspired by Gershom Scholem’s Kabbalah and mystic poetry by Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī.
In the latest of poet’s published poetry books, you might notice turning to an intimate confession, especially when compared to licentiousness in his earlier works. However, his poems are still based on juxtapositions of visionary images, and figures of speech are used in a virtuoso manner.
About the author:
Tomaž Šalamun — born in 1941 in Zagreb . He graduated from University of Ljubljana, where he studied art history and history. He was given a scholarship at universities in Kraków, Rome, Paris and Mexico City. He spent two years at the University of Iowa as a participant in the International Writing Program and as an assistant at the Department of Comparative Literature. After a short period of working at the Academy of Fine Arts and Museum of Modern Art in Ljubljana, he was forced to work as a salesman and an English teacher. After political changes hehe served as Cultural Attaché to the Consulate General of Slovenia in New York. He died on 27th December 2014.
He published 30 poetry books and many selections of his poems in foreign languages.
Details of the publication:
Translation: Katarina Šalamun-Biedrzycka
Translation of text by Primoza Čučnika: Agnieszka Będkowska-Kopczyk, Michał Kopczyk
Edited by: Bartłomiej Majzel, Marek Zieliński, Maciej Melecki
Graphic and typography: Wojtek Kucharczyk
Publisher: Cultural Institution Ars Cameralis Silesiae Superioris
Year and place of publishing: Katowice 2002
The book was published with financial support of the Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia in Warsaw.
The book was published after meeting with the poet in Katowice in 2000 during Ⅸ Ars Cameralis Festival 2000.