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Contributor

Ryszard Krynicki

Contributor

Ryszard Krynicki

Ryszard Krynicki, one of the most prominent poets of postwar Poland, was born in 1943 in Sankt Valentin, Austria, where his parents had been deported to a Nazi labor camp. In Poland in the 1960s he became a leading member of the "New Wave" group of poets, which included Adam Zagajewski and Stanislaw Baranczak. He was co-editor of Zapis, the first independent literary magazine in Communist Poland to be published outside the reach of official censorship. He made his debut in 1968 with the collection Speed of Chase, Speed of Flight, and after the publication of his second collection, Collective Organism, in a form severely cut by censorship, his work was published by the Institut Littéraire in Paris and by underground presses in Poland. His most recent collection, Magnetic Point, was published in 1996. Krynicki is a distinguished translator of German-language poetry, in particular of Paul Celan and Nelly Sachs. He has received many awards, among them the Polish Poets' Award, the Koscielski Foundation Award, and the Robert Graves-PEN Club Award. Since 1989 he has run the prestigious independent publishing house a5, which publishes Wislawa Szymborska, Zbigniew Herbert, Adam Zagajewski and the work of many younger Polish poets, as well as literary essays and poetry in translation.

Articles by Ryszard Krynicki

Rue de Poitiers
By Ryszard Krynicki
A late afternoon, snow is falling.Near the striking Musee d’Orsay you seea gray bundle on the edge of the sidewalk:a bum rolled up into a ball (or a refugeefrom some country plunged in civil war)still…
Translated from Polish by Alissa Valles
Sweet, innocent
By Ryszard Krynicki
Sweet, innocent words,sweet, round phrases,from sweet, smoothrounded comma’spure poisonseeps 
Translated from Polish by Alissa Valles
Return from Assisi
By Ryszard Krynicki
A mutilated Giotto. A loud: Silenzio!From a car transporting animalswe passed on the waythe helpless look of a calfbeing taken off to slaughterfollows me.Help, Saint Francis.Appear before the slaughterhouse…
Translated from Polish by Alissa Valles
After Rain
By Ryszard Krynicki
Brother and sister, inscrutable sphinx, noble snail:what fate are you inscribing in your uncertain handon the airport runway, in the last fall of a murderous century?2000 
Translated from Polish by Alissa Valles
The Museum of Fine Arts in Budapest
By Ryszard Krynicki
How did you find yourself here,poor mummy of an Egyptian princess,exposed to alien stares?Now it is here you have your afterlife.I myself am a part of it for a moment,while I’m looking at you.So…
Translated from Polish by Alissa Valles
A Stone from New World
By Ryszard Krynicki
Only when I turned it over on its other side did I see that the heavy sandstone circle which looked like the top half of a mill, grindstone or the top of a well, had been taken from an old Jewish tombstone.…
Translated from Polish by Alissa Valles