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A constant fiesta in Paris


Preparing the anthology of American poets
Julia Hartwig Poet
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In that time... ah, yes I mentioned an anthology of American poets that Artur and I prepared together. It was a project that required a lot of preparation especially as many of the American poets hadn't yet been translated into Polish. A large number of the translations have been done by us but we have acknowledged all of the translators, including, of course, Miłosz. Each of us worked separately. At the time, Artur was writing prose, we would often divide up so that we could work far away from Warsaw where we were always being a bit imposed on both socially and by the Literary Union. However, Obory provided us with the opportunity to cut ourselves off from this completely and that's where much of our work was done because although we did it unwillingly, we would separate for about a month to catch up with various projects.

W tym czasie już... Aha, jeszcze... znaczy, wspomniałam o antologii poetów amerykańskich, którą robiliśmy zatem... razem z Arturem. To była praca, która wymagała dużego przygotowania, tym bardziej że bardzo wielu poetów amerykańskich nie było jeszcze wówczas tłumaczonych na polski. I w dużej mierze tam są robione przekłady przez nas, ale wszystkich uczciwie, którzy tłumaczyli Amerykanów, uwzględniliśmy tam, między innymi właśnie oczywiście Miłosza. I... i każde z nas prowadziło oczywiście prace na własny... na własny jakby rachunek. Artur pisywał wtedy prozy, myśmy się często bardzo rozdzielali, żeby pracować z daleka od Warszawy, gdzie byliśmy troszkę może eksploatowani zawsze – i towarzysko, i... i związkowo – mam na myśli Związek Literatów. No, ale Obory dawały takie... taką możliwość kompletnego odseparowania się i tam powstało sporo naszych rzeczy, bo niechętnie, aleśmy się rozdzielali na jakiś miesiąc, żeby... żeby podciągnąć jakąś pracę.

Born to a Polish father and a Russian mother, Julia Hartwig (1921-2017) was a Polish poet, essayist, translator and author of children's books. She studied at the University of Warsaw, the Catholic University in Lublin and the Jagiellonian University in Kraków. Czesław Miłosz called her 'the grande dame of Polish poetry'. Julia Hartwig was one of the few poets in Poland who made masterly use of poetic prose. She translated poems by Apollinaire, Rimbaud, Max Jacob, Cendrars and Supervielle, and published monographs on Apollinaire and Gerard de Nerval. She also translated from English, and published a large anthology of American poetry which she co-edited in 1992 with her late husband, the poet Artur Międzyrzecki.

Listeners: Andrzej Wolski

Film director and documentary maker, Andrzej Wolski has made around 40 films since 1982 for French television, the BBC, TVP and other TV networks. He specializes in portraits and in historical films. Films that he has directed or written the screenplay for include Kultura, which he co-directed with Agnieszka Holland, and KOR which presents the history of the Worker’s Defence Committee as told by its members. Andrzej Wolski has received many awards for his work, including the UNESCO Grand Prix at the Festival du Film d’Art.

Tags: Literary Union, Obory, Warsaw, Czesław Miłosz, Artur Międzyrzecki

Duration: 1 minute, 11 seconds

Date story recorded: June 2010

Date story went live: 15 June 2011