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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Places (in alphabetical order)

Robert Konečný

1906  –  1981

Poet, writer, essayist, psychology professor, connected with Brno all his professional and personal life. During the Nazi occupation, his part in the Obrana národa / ‘Defence of the nation’ resistance brought imprisonment in Kounice in Brno, and in Wrocław (1939–1945). This phase of his life is remembered in his prose work Jeden z vás  (One like you) and his poetic collection Písně z cely (Songs from a prison cell) published in 1945.

The author and the places of his/her poems

The poem and the place

Songs from a prison cell

In the dark, in my harsh cell held.
Is our home lilac fragrant, guess?
Weak, from afar and clumsy spelled
a Morse-code message: S – O – S!

Like from ships’ cabins sinking, filling,
come cries of those still living, last;
or in the mine, dread-blackened, chilling,
when buried miners tap, aghast,
like from ships’ cabins sinking, filling.

                                                     translated by Václav Pinkava

Konečný, Robert: Písně z cely  (Songs from a prison cell), Brno: Klub Kounicových kolejí 1946, p. 31.


Jiří Trávníček  -   travnicek@ucl.cas.cz
Michal Fránek  -   franek@ucl.cas.cz

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