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ABOUT GYÖRGY FALUDY ...gyorgy faludy

Born in 1910, György Faludy lived through almost all of twentieth century and witnessed many of its major events. In the 1930s he was already an established poet in Hungary, but at the advent of WW II he had to escape Budapest because of his Jewish origin and socialist politics. Traveling through France and North Africa he eventually ended up in the United States where he joined the Army and served in the Pacific. After the war he spurned the offer of US citizenship and went back to liberated Hungary; an ardent socialist, he was eager to help build a new, democratic country on the rubble of the War. But soon the Stalinist regime arrested him as an American spy and kept him at the infamous Recsk forced labor camp until Stalin's death in 1953 when the camp was dismantled. During the 1956 Hungarian Revolution he fled the country again and started a new life of exile, first in England and then in Canada until the collapse of Communism in 1989, when he was finally able to go back to Hungary, where he was showered with prizes. He continued to write and give public readings till he died in September 2006. The New York Times observed his passing in an obituary. His poetry remains as contemporary and relevant as ever.

Read about his recent book Silver Pirouettes: Selected Poems

 

A SAMPLE FROM GYÖRGY FALUDY ...

SILVER PIROUETTES (Sonnet 12)

(A tér mélykék árnyéknak nótt bokádhoz)
Your ankles grow deep-blue shadows for space,
the universe has you for its vault.
Palm trees sprout deep-green explosions behind
your shoulders. And the clock has stalled.

Your face is my reliable sundial,
the light in the window dances its ballet,
my May is jasmine in your armpit;
our nearest neighbor is in the Milky Way.

Furniture swings with us like a circus trapeze
without weight. Sometimes I look back:
dust lashes the five continents and seas,

but on your divine empire the sun never sets;
what we have here is melodious, oceanic peace
and up there the moon swirls silver pirouettes.

Malta, 1966

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