Ivan Blatný

Poet, son of the writer Lev Blatný (1894-1930). Born in Brno, he spent the first part of his life here – before escaping into exile in 1948. He lived in a house...

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František Halas

Poet, translator and publicist, Brno born, spent his childhood and youth here. He learned the bookseller’s trade from A. Píša and for a brief period (1919–1921)...

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Oldřich Mikulášek

Poet and publicist. Lived in Brno from 1937 until his death, latterly at Mášova street. He is linked to several cultural institutions (the Brno studios of Czechoslovak...

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Jaroslav Seifert

Poet, publicist, memoirist. The first – and so far the only Czech to receive the Nobel prize for Literature. In addition to the lasting popularity he won through...

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Jan Skácel

Poet, writer, editor and translator. Spent most of his life in Brno and is closely linked to a number of Brno cultural institutions (the magazine Host do domu...

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Vít Slíva

Poet and schoolteacher. His connection to Brno dates back to his university days. Apart from one interlude, he has been living to this day at Poděbradova street....

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Brno

Places (in alphabetical order)

Vít Slíva

1951

Poet and schoolteacher. His connection to Brno dates back to his university days. Apart from one interlude, he has been living to this day at Poděbradova street. He has worked at the grammar school on Slovanské náměstí square (1975–1998) and at the Biskupské gymnázium grammar school (since 2004), during the 1980s he published in the Brněnský večerník evening paper. His debut came in 1984 (Nepokoj hodin, The restlessness of clocks) followed by several other collections – e.g. Volské oko (Ox-eye) (1997) and Bubnování na sudy (Drumming on barrels, 2002).



The poem and the place



Over Brno

To Godson Karel

Regiments have crossed the Svratka, toads,
with their stretching wires, gardens fill.
Wind-blown landmines by your ears explode,
from the willows death hangs, higher still…

Kohoutovice draws raven droves,
while the stuka terror sirens vent;
up to Kohoutovice a-clambering goes
my own decimated regiment.

Autumn bunker decked, the hilltop filled
golden-red flashing glows –
Head for the last judgement, battlefield,
take heart: off to the snows!


                                         translated by Václav Pinkava



Slíva, Vít: Souvrať (Headland), Brno: Host 2007, p. 43.




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