Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Liviu Ioan Stoiciu: On the days I do not write one line for the drawer I feel I have wasted a day of my life – and lately this has happened more...

A few days ago, I leafed through "Child of Europe: a new anthology of East European poetry", and I read a few poems by Liviu Ioan Stoiciu, and that these were quite strange, being seemingly incomplete and disjointed, so the investigation into the poet began. It turns out that there is currently no collection of Stoiciu poetry available in English, but I did find an interview. I'll reread the poems and type so of it up.


"I read poetry voraciously, I am a reader of poetry more than a writer of it. What I read was not entirely satisfactory to my sensibility.

I am indeed very free when I write. I never think of obstacles, censorship, or anything that surrounds me. I think of ‘human condition’. When I write I am first and foremost honest with myself, I will never lie to myself then. This is the most intense form of freedom. I have never been a party member. I have never written my graduation paper, which has forced me to do humiliating jobs. I have never aimed at positions; after the revolution I did not know when to say no and it was a terrible source of agony. I have always been unable to adapt and seemed incomprehensible to everyone. I have wanted to be a ‘common’ person (no car, no villa, no trips abroad, no worldly ambitions), to be myself, never to hate myself for a shameful compromise. It has not been easy to fight human frailty in this way. My life has been full of renunciations and deprivations. I have lived from day to day – I could hardly afford vacations at the seaside or in the mountains, so I wrote and wrote, musing that a line is more than a vacation one easily forgets. I am trying to say I am a simple man, who does not know how to enjoy life – my very name is proof of that (connected with the word ‘stoic’, as my father’s father came from the old Aromanian country of Macedonia, the country of ‘stoics’). I have always and only wanted to be left alone. Unfortunately since 1981 I was followed by the Securitate and my life was miserable. But I was still free when I wrote. Subconsciously, self-censorship perfected my language, but I never gave up poetry for the sake of being subversive. A year after my debut I entered with Heart of Rays (1982) an infernal, adult world, and had to leave the paradise of my childhood free from all political regimes, as it can be seen in The Train Flag.

My poetic manner? It was born while I wrote for the drawer. Before my debut volume – when I was thirty – I had written twelve volumes. I mean that. On the days I do not write one line for the drawer I feel I have wasted a day of my life – and lately this has happened more and more often, so I must be slowly dying. All I can do is read and write. It is a matter of calling. I bear my cross (reading and writing). So how could I fail to find out my calling? I do not have a pattern. Whenever I sit down in front of the sheet of paper (I still write in longhand, not using the computer), I am intensely anxious, I experience an existential alarm. Fortunately, though, I write freely, not caring about the masterpiece. I write ‘exercises’ which I later on revise if they look good."

No comments:

Post a Comment