Marta Podgórnik

A poetess born in 1979, she also writes criticism under the pen name Anna Ekierhardt. Regarded as one of the most controversial poetesses of the younger generation, she has published seven volumes of poetry, and her work has appeared in all the major cultural periodicals. She lives in Gliwice. She won Gdynia Literary Prize in 2012.

Podgórnik’s debut was highly spectacular, in view of her age (the book came out when she was seventeen). This start guaranteed her the close scrutiny of the critics, who almost unanimously acclaimed “Attempts at Negotiation” as an important and valuable book. The literary public had to wait four years for her next volume, during which time Podgórnik was silent as a poet, but wrote as a critic. Her articles clearly showed her strength of personality and her sceptical approach to any kind of critical generalisation, underlining the individual character of her poetry as well as of her criticism. These features are perhaps best demonstrated by the title of one of her articles which appeared in the Kraków magazine Studium, and which reads: “A text against everything”. Marta Podgórnik’s poetry tackles themes that are confined to the space in between the individual and some variously understood conventions, as much literary as social. It is the kind of confessional poetry that places the authorial “I” in the foreground – the events of everyday life, often related with a precision worthy of an intimate diary. On this level Podgórnik’s books can be read as guides to the everyday woes and joys of a young woman – her journeys, her performances, her times in hospital, her love affairs, suicide attempts, relationships with other people, and so on. The background to this is the bridge between the experience of individual existence and the necessity of living within a culture. Thus she often makes use of traditional forms, writing rhyming poems and keeping to the rules of versification. In this way she seems to be exploring the whole issue of expression, and the possibility of smuggling in her own individual ingredients with the help of the universal tools of poetry, literary conventions and other trademarks of culture.

Bibliography

  • Próby negocjacji, 1996
  • Paradiso, Legnica: Biuro Literackie Port Legnica, 2000
  • Długi maj, Wrocław: Biuro Literackie, 2004
  • Opium i Lament, Wrocław: Biuro Literackie, 2005
  • Dwa do jeden, Wrocław: Biuro Literackie, 2006
  • Pięć opakowań (1993-2008), Wrocław: Biuro Literackie, 2008
  • Rezydencja surykatek, Wrocław: Biuro Literackie, 2011
  • Nic o mnie nie wiesz, Wrocław: Biuro Literackie, 2012
  • Zawsze, Wrocław: Biuro Literackie, 2015