Child of Europe: A New Anthology of East European Poetry

Michael March, Editor Puffin Books $9.95 (288p) ISBN 978-0-14-058640-4
The range of subject matter in this vigorous collection is large, although the oppressive conditions in post-war Eastern Europe is a predominant theme; all but one of the poets were born after 1940 and have lived most of their lives under Communist regimes. Yugoslavia's Gojko Djogo, once imprisoned for his poetry, writes about pk years wasted in vigil for the death of a cruel dictator, presumably Tito: ``One doesn't live a lifetime / waiting for another to vanish. / Who counts the days / counts his own.'' Hungarian poet Gyorgy Petri bemoans a ``fading'' world where faith and hope have been transformed into a ``terrible loneliness,'' which ``crackles and flakes / like the rust on iron rails.'' On a less solemn note, Romania's Ioana Craciunescu looks at lovemaking with refreshing candor: ``I want to hear her moans, / to crowd her into corners and see her cracked / lips, to gaze into her eyes (she'll have / all those--eyes, nose, throat . . . ?).'' There are many fine poems here, but the sheer number of poets may be somewhat daunting. And with only a brief description of each writer's aesthetic principles, the reader does not have enough information to best appreciate a poet's work. March is the creator of the East European Forum at London's Institute of Contemporary Arts. (June)
Reviewed on: 06/03/1991
Release date: 06/01/1991
Genre: Fiction
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