Sunday, November 11, 2007

Shadow of a soul...Bella Dizhur

I recently got the book of collected poems by Bella Dizhur from STRAND.
The intense words immediately drew me into the poet's world!
How many humans have to struggle to make their voices heard?
Some of them do succeed... while a vast number of them are pushed to the obscurity by the cruel winds of humans' prejudiced
Well, the introduction was given by Vasily Aksyonov...
Bella Dizhur for many years, a member of the Sverdlovsk branch of the USSR's Writer's Union, and she published several collections of Poems. From the outside, all of this appears to be an absolutely normal. privileged, professional literary life. But actually, and i know this from personal experience, this life consisted of a multitude of petty insults, nasty carping; and sometimes, a truly "endless number of humiliations" unfolded before the poet.
Many of Dizhur's poems were unpublished in the Soviet Union. She was denounced so much for her poetry and lived seven years in Yurmala as a refusnik, a person denied an exit visa. She was finally allowed to emigrate to the U.S. in 1987, at the age of 84.
I would like to share some of her poems which were translated in English with you all...

From the Notebook - URBAN DESERT
Lie for now, notebook, deep inside the desk;
Lie pretend to be without tongue.
My journey is long -
I am not looking for a short one.
So keep safe my truthful voice!

In a large universe
a small world.
Not a room; just a corner.
A book by the window, a view of half-sky,
A crust of bread, a glass of wine
And solitude. Such is the lot
Of someone who keeps to himself.

But this is a fate I do not fear.
Another stands with an outstretched hand
And from my window, a view of half-sky,
bread, a book and a glass of wine.
And all of the universe moves towards me.

There is a saying in Tamil..."Yaam petra inbam, peruga ivvaiyagam!" meaning...
"Sharing the happiness I experienced, with the Universe!"

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