Dwaj poeci i wspólna sprawa. O egzystencjalnej metafizyce w poezji Stanisława Czerniaka i Marka Kazimierza Siwca

Krzysztof Derdowski


The present essay is dedicated to the poetry of Stanisław Czerniak and Marek Kazimierz Siwiec. The author points out the similarities and dissimilarities with respect to how the two poets address the fundamental issues. As for the generation, they might be subsumed under the New Wave movement; still, their poetry-art differs significantly form the latter. They both undertake themes, and use techniques, different to those the New Wave writers used to. Krzysztof Derdowski, when describing Stanisław Czerniak’s poetry, draws first of all from the poetical books The Naked THAT (2009) and The Spark of Mutiny (2017). He remarks that there was no place in Czerniak’s poems for personal confessions; in vain are to be sought biographical tropes there. To the contrary, the poet speaks of the lyric laboratory, viz. of coping with the philosophical views of the acknowledged thinkers and confronting them with reality. Describing Czerniak’s writings, K. Derdowski recalls the statement of Paweł Dybel, the outstanding expert in poetry and literature. Following Dybel, the author states that death dominates in The Spark of Mutiny as a haunting motive. However, an evolution in how the theme is dealt with is visible too. At the beginnings of Czerniak’s artistic pathway, the pivotal role was played by the poems on identity and questions regarding who he was. In the last poetic book, The Spark of Mutiny, in turn, the considerations on passing away, death and nothingness are enhanced. Despite the similarities in how the themes are considered, the creative method adopted by Marek Kazimierz Siwiec is totally different. In his poems, the first person singular dominates. It has been the case since situations and events were depicted thus in his first poetic book The Inverted Mirror (1979). In M. K. Siwiec’s poetry, the persons, circumstances, events and situations are recalled which hide the source mystery of existence under what is superficially perceptible. The poet peers into the mystery of logos through the observed phenomena. In the chaos of the world, when passed through, the existential affirmation of life becomes visible; nay, the cosmic order and stillness. According to Krzysztof Derdowski, Stanisław Czerniak is the poet of the radical pessimism. The main enemy of man is the inexorable time. As an antidote for the tragedy of existence, a metaphysical utopia is pursued by the author of Impasse. He presents the possible; thinkable worlds; he speaks of the state of Otherness. Marek Kazimierz Siwiec, albeit making out evil and being sensitive to it, expresses flashes and dazzling in which the reconciliation with the world occurs. Above the passing away, the poet seems to reach for what appears to abide eternally. According to K. Derdowski, both S. Czerniak and M. K. Siwiec record extreme sensations and boundary situations. Siwiec states the moments revealed by death; but to his mind, there was a trace left after the life gone, and not only in consciousness but substantiated in the air too. The inevitable departure from what existed and occurred is the shared interest of the both poets. The human death is preceded by the emotional breaking away with what people were attached to, which is called by Czerniak “ungluing” from the matters and people. The both poets, in the opinion of K. Derdowski, analyze death minutely as well the circumstances that accompany it. Still, in Czerniak, the process of disintegration affects the very subject. On the other hand, the death in the writings by M. K. Siwiec boosts – paradoxically – the intensity the life is lived, and the disintegration does so also. Death was inseparable from being-human and not tantamount to ceasing to be so. It was not sheer degradation of the subject.

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