This volume contains more than 50 of the best-loved and most-read, the best-selling and most-studied poems of Boleslaw Lesmian, one of Poland’s greatest poets of all time. His poetry is unique on a world scale: it is universal and profoundly humane; it is a quest to fathom out the unknowable, to express the inexpressible, to grasp all the states of being—between existence and nonexistence, including “under-being” and “near-unbeing.” This poems are attempts to accustom oneself to nothingness, to “no-everything.” That is why, there is always something happening even in the void. Lesmian overcomes the absurdity and grotesqueness of human existence with love and humor. Not many poets in the world have expressed love so sensuously and sensually and, yet so subtly and simply. To achieve that goal, he invented his own poetic language and style. His coinages and strict metrics have constituted a notorious discouragement to translators, especially of non-Slavic languages for decades. Fortunately, Marian Polak-Chlabicz has undertaken the Herculean task of rendering Lesmian’s “untranslatable” poems into English, the result of which is this book, where “marvels reveal themselves in revelations and kindle up elation.” He has proven beyond all doubt that “a beautiful woman can be faithful,” as is his translation.
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