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Clouded Sky [Paperback]

Clouded Sky [Paperback]

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Item description for Clouded Sky by Miklos Radnoti, Steven Polgar, Stephen Berg & S. J. Marks...

"...a truly great poet, one in whom the lyrical image-maker and the critical human intelligence dealing with the tragic twentieth century are utterly fused, as they so rarely are . . . The quality of the translation is such that it is hard to remember the poems were not first written in English, even though one is always aware of Radnoti's vision as European and of his locus as Hungary."--Denise Levertov

The Hungarian Jewish poet Miklos Radnoti (1909-1944) was also a prolific translator and editor who wrote some of his greatest poems in the labor camps and copper mines of Yugoslavia before being killed by the Nazis. Leaving behind a body of work that ranks with the classics of Hungarian verse, his influence is now being felt among a younger generation. In 1946, Radnoti's body was exhumed from a mass grave by his wife who found a notebook of his poems (many of which were addressed to her) in his coat pocket.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   128
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.5" Width: 5.5" Height: 8.25"
Weight:   0.35 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Aug 1, 2003
Publisher   Sheep Meadow
ISBN  1931357129  
ISBN13  9781931357128  

Availability  0 units.

More About Miklos Radnoti, Steven Polgar, Stephen Berg & S. J. Marks

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Product Categories

1Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Humanities > English > American Literature
2Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Poetry > Anthologies
3Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Poetry > General
4Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Poetry > Single Authors > United States
5Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > World Literature > United States > Poetry > 20th Century
6Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > World Literature > United States > Poetry > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Clouded Sky?

Revelations from the other side of death  Apr 21, 2007
Testament to the power of art in the face of death, taking a lyrical stance amid horrors--Miklos Radnoti affirms good things of life: joys of lovers, lushness of the physical world, power of human perception and of language.

He views Spain of 1937 from Paris as:

. . . black-winged war, whipping us,
Terror flies across the border.
No one sows, no one reaps on the other side.
Grapes aren't picked any more. ("Spain, Spain," 1937)

Radnoti, Hungarian Jew who opposed the Nazi-inspired Horthy regime, was sent to forced labor camps. Many poems in Clouded Sky were smuggled out of the camps by surviving prisoners. Others (such as the following) were discoverd on postcards in his pockets when his body was exhumed from a mass grave in 1946:

From Bulgaria the huge wild pulse of artillery.
It beats on the mountain ridge, then hesitates and falls.
Men, animals, wagons and thoughts. They are swelling.
The road whinnies and rears up. The sky gallops. ("Postcard 1," 1944)

Steven Polgar, Stephen Berg, and S.J. Marks have drawn wide praise for their translations from the Hungarian. That poetry can exist under such conditions is remarkable. Radnoti describes scenes of death and horror in his final days that remind us of the bloodiest parts of the Iliad and the Aeneid.

Yet among all the horrors are memories of coffee houses and of Paris where "at the intersection of the Boulevard St. Michel //and the Rue Cujas, the sidewalk slopes a little," as well as reflections of sensuous love and memories of great light:

Flowers pacing in my memories,
I stand in the flapping rain.
An army of women and children walks down the road.
Smoke in the sky,
A cloud's ripple. It's lifting. Light. Silver. ("In My Memories," 1940)


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