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Andrzej Kijowski

Photo by T. Kijowski

Andrzej Kijowski

The child brought by a bird

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Read by Wojciech Barczyński, recorded by Radiofonia Association
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English translation: Mikołaj Pytlik
Planty Park: lilac bushes, chestnut trees, sometimes a monument. Children shout, old men snooze. Beyond the trees I see the Old Town: walls of old bricks flash behind the naked boughs. Withered heather, wild grape vine or beech – those are the colors in which old bricks flash – and tarnished copper, green as a mountain pond in the Tatras – copper in cascades of steep housetops, in the spires of bell-towers, and in the domes that hang softly like satin lampshades. And opposite: caryatids, plaster atlantes, and cupids stuck under paunchy balconies; faux marble and old stucco glittering with mica on portals; shiny varnish-covered gates, doorknobs as clean as a whistle, tablets of stone; in the windows: tulle, laces, palm trees, jars of jam, cats on their pillows, birds in their cages and barometers with a friar that always stays under his awning, because there is always a depression over our city.
English translation: Mikołaj Pytlik
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Andrzej Kijowski

(pseudonym Dedal, 1928–1985) – one of the most eminent representatives of the Krakow school of literary criticism, activist of the opposition in the People’s Republic of Poland. A student of Kazimierz Wyka and a friend of Jan Błoński. As a child he was seriously ill with cholera and survived, as he himself claimed, thanks to “a miracle”. When the doctors saw no more hope for the boy, his mother was believed to have had a vision of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who had a glass of cognac served to the dying boy. The potion proved salutary. Kijowski used to write for Przegląd Kulturalny and Tygodnik Powszechny, and was a long-term editor of Twórczość. The famous Kroniki Dedala (Daedalus Chronicles) made history. In 1968, after Kazimierz Dejmek’s staging of Dziady (The Forefathers’ Eve) was forced off the stage, he wrote the famous resolution of writers against censorship. (ms)

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