Marek Kazimierz Siwiec – mistyczny realista czy moralista w służbie lirycznego świadectwa?

Stanisław Czerniak


The author enters a friendly polemic with the findings of Krzysztof Derdowski’s book Kto w wielkiej gonitwie życia… Rzecz o poezji Marka Kazimierza Siwca (Who in the Great Race of Life… Comments on the Poetry of Marek Kazimierz Siwiec) to reflect on the essential features of Siwiec’s verses. Where Derdowski rather focuses on this poetry’s philosophical – and especially metaphysical – import (against the background of a philosophical tradition ranging from Heraclitus to 20th-century existentialism), the author is more intent on tracing its ties to what we broadly understand as everyday communication. For this he employs the category “poetry of encounter”, bound with which, in his opinion, are certain ethical imperatives which go beyond the existentialist ethic of being authentic and true to oneself (this is discussed in reference to the Aristotelian ethic of virtues practiced within the polis and E. Lévinas’ “ethics of Otherness”). One of the essay’s main themes is the author’s polemic with Derdowski’s claims about the “mystical character” of Siwiec’s poems. In broad reference to the views of Gernot Böhme, he argues that self-aware poetry of encounter as if by definition cannot be part of any mystical experience. In a separate line of reflection he also analyses the relations between the poetry of M.K. Siwiec and Zbigniew Herbert.

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