Julia Hartwig

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  • photo by Krzysztof Dubiel

A poet, essayist, translator and author of children's books, she was born in Lublin in 1921. She has been awarded numerous fellowships in France and the United States and has won the Jurzykowski Prize and the Thornton Wilder Prize from the Translation Center at Columbia University, as well as the Austrian Georg Trakl Prize for poetry. She lives in Warsaw. Despite having published only a few volumes of poetry, she occupies a prominent place in the Polish literary landscape. Resisting categorization, she holds a position all her own, removed from current fashions or snobbery. One characteristic of her poetry is a dislike for overall views of the world or single emotional tonalities. In her subtle and refined works (which nevertheless have one thing in common: accessibility), there are often reconciled contradictions. Seriousness counterbalances irony and despair offsets the ecstatic joy of existence. She develops her verses onirically, with visions full of images juxtaposed with skillfully evoked concrete facts or semi-mystical illumination that shows the inner structure of visible reality. They also contain an intellectual maturity and a knowledge of the richness of the world we have been given, in all its dark and bright aspects and in its impossibility of reduction to a single formula, evaluation or program. She usually uses "calm," carefully-crafted forms, avoiding chaos and randomness. She is one of the few poets able in an accomplished way to exploit the poeme en prose. This certainly has something to do with her long association with French literature. Hartwig has translated Apollinaire, Rimbaud, Max Jacob, Cendrars and Supervielle, and published studies of Apollinaire and Gerard de Nerval. She has also translated from English and published a large anthology of modern American poems, I Sing Modern Man, in 1992 (in collaboration with her late husband, the poet Artur Miedzyrzecki).

"Contradiction is my element, the right for which I fight."
Julia Hartwig

Bibliography

    Poems and Poetic Prose:
  • Pożegnania, Warszawa: Czytelnik, 1956.
  • Wolne ręce, Warszawa: PIW, 1969.
  • Dwoistość, Warszawa: Czytelnik, 1971.
  • Czuwanie, Warszawa: Czytelnik, 1978.
  • Dziennik amerykański, Warszawa: PIW, 1980.
  • Chwila postoju, Kraków: WL, 1980.
  • Obcowanie, Warszawa: Czytelnik, 1987.
  • Czułość, Kraków: Znak, 1992.
  • Nim opatrzy się zieleń, Kraków: Znak, 1995.
  • Zobaczone, Kraków: a5, 1999.
  • Przemija postać świata, Warszawa: Prószyński i S-ka 1999.
  • Zawsze od nowa, Warszawa: Twój styl, 1999.
  • Nie ma odpowiedzi, Warszawa: Sic!, 2001.
  • Błyski, Warszawa: Sic!, 2002.
  • Wiersze amerykańskie, Warszawa: Sic!, 2002.
  • Mówiąc nie tylko do siebie, Warszawa: Sic!, 2003.
  • Bez pożegnania, Warszawa: Sic!, 2004.
  • Zwierzenia i błyski, Warszawa: Sic!, 2004.
  • W objęciach świata, Warszawa: Anagram, 2004.
  • To wróci, Warszawa: Sic!, 2007.
  • Poezje wybrane/Selected Poems, Kraków: WL, 2008
  • Trzecie błyski, Warszawa: Sic!, 2008.
  • Jasne niejasne, Kraków: a5, 2009.
  • Wiersze wybrane, Kraków: a5, 2010.
  • Gorzkie żale, Kraków: a5, 2011.
  • Zapisane, Kraków: a5, 2013.
    Essays/Journals/Reportages:
  • Z niedalekich podróży, Warszawa: Ludowa Spółdzielnia Wydawnicza, 1954.
  • Zawsze powroty - dzienniki podróży, Warszawa: Sic!, 2001.; wznow.: Warszawa: Sic!, 2005
  • Wybrańcy losu, Warszawa: Sic!, 2006.
  • Podziękowanie za gościnę, Gdańsk: słowo/obraz terytoria, 2007.
  • Dziennik, Kraków: Wydawnictwo Literackie, 2011.
  • Dziennik t.2, Kraków: Wydawnictwo Literackie, 2014.
  • Największe szczęście, największy ból, Kraków: a5, 2014
    Studies:
  • Apollinaire, Warszawa: PIW, 1962.
  • Gerard de Nerval, Warszawa: PIW, 1972.
    Books for Children:
  • Jaś i Małgosia [współautor: A. Międzyrzecki], Warszawa 1961.
  • Przygody Poziomki [współautor: A. Międzyrzecki], t. 1, 2, Warszawa: Nasza Księgarnia,1961, 1964.
  • Tomcio Paluch [współautor: A. Międzyrzecki], Warszawa 1962.
  • Wielki pościg [współautor: A. Międzyrzecki], Warszawa: Nasza Księgarnia, 1969.
  • Zguba Michałka, Warszawa: Nasza Księgarnia, 1969.

Translations: 

Czech:

  • Apollinaire, Odeon, 1966.

English:

  • In Praise of the Unfinished, trans. John and Bogdana Carpenter, USA: Knopf, 2008
  • It will return [To wróci], trans. John and Bogdana Carpenter, Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 2012

French:

  • Apollinaire, trans. Jean-Yves Erhel, Paris: Mercure de France, 1972.

German:

  • Und alles wird erinnert (poems selection), tłum. Bernard Hartmann, Frankfurt: Verlag Neue Kritik, 2013.

Hungarian:

  • Apollinaire, Gondat, 1968.

Italian:

  • Sotto quest'isola, trans. Silvano De Fanti, Roma: Donzelli, 2007

Russian:

  • Apollinaire, Moskwa: Progress, 1971.

Serbian:

  • Zobaczone, trans. Biserka Rajcic, Belgrad: Knijzevna Opstina Vrsac, 2009