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Entries Tagged as '“Communist prisons”'

“Blouse Roumaine”: Henriette-Yvonne Stahl (Mrs. Petru Dumitriu), (1900-1984), Romania, “Prisoner of Conscience”

January 4th, 2017 · No Comments · Books, Communist Prisons, Diary, Diaspora, Famous People, International Media, PEOPLE, POLITICAL DETENTION / DISSENT, quotations, Reviews, Translations

By contrast to Stahl, Dumitriu was an unknown quantity, a rough diamond from the provinces, the young-man-in-a-hurry, ready to climb the greasy pole of the communist political establishment. This may not be the place to discuss this ‘fatal attraction’, which the fragrant 45 year-old Stahl had for the handsome 22 year-old muscle.

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Dictionary of Romanian Quotations – Letter “N”

November 12th, 2016 · No Comments · Books, Communist Prisons, Diaspora, Education, Famous People, History, International Media, PEOPLE, POLITICAL DETENTION / DISSENT, quotations, Translations

It is true, that when I arrived at the prison sorting centre, at Ghencea, I was made to scrub the floors, something I had never done in my life, which prompted my self-analysis: ‘what was the point to have been presented to the King of England, when I could not even scrub the floors?’

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Poetry in Translation (CCCLXIV), Constantin OPRIŞAN (1921, co. BACĂU- 1959, JILAVA Political Prison, BUCHAREST, ROMANIA): “Vesperală”, “Vespers”

November 19th, 2015 · No Comments · Communist Prisons, Famous People, History, PEOPLE, Poetry, POLITICAL DETENTION / DISSENT, quotations, Translations

Vesperală
Constantin_Oprişan
Şi vântul, şi cântul, şi inima-mi frântă,
Şi toamna, şi frunza-şi trăiau agonia.
Tăcere… Un flaut mai cântă:
Maria, Maria, Maria!
The battered Soul is breaking,
Like tree leaves on Golgotha’s road.
As a prayer, a lone flute is singing,
Oh, Mary – the Mother of God!

Rendered in English by Constantin ROMAN, London,
© 2015 Copyright Constantin ROMAN

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Poetry in Translation (CCCXV): Alexandru Osvald (A. O.) TEODOREANU, aka “Pastorel” (1894-1964), ROMANIA – “CALIGULA ”, “CALIGULA ”

January 24th, 2015 · No Comments · Communist Prisons, PEOPLE, Poetry, POLITICAL DETENTION / DISSENT, quotations, Translations

CALIGULA
Pastorel TEODOREANU
(1894-1964)

Caligula, omnipotent
Rode his horse to Parliament.
Ceausescu more sinister
Made his ass a Minister.

Rendered in English by Constantin ROMAN,
London © 2015 Copyright Constantin ROMAN, London

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Poetry in Translation (CXLVIII): Sergiu MANDINESCU (1926-1964), ROMANIA, “. “Amen – (Prison Prayer)”, “ AMIN (Reeducare)”

November 25th, 2012 · No Comments · PEOPLE, Poetry, quotations, Translations, Uncategorized

Sergiu MANDINESCU (1926-1964), ROMANIA, Poet of the Communist Prisons. “Amen – (Prison Prayer)”, “ AMIN (Reeducare)”, “ AMIN (Reeducare)” If I only had an angel’s quill
and the dark ink of night
perhaps only then I might
gather from all my vagaries
to write my memories
telling why I’m bleeding, I will.

“ AMIN (Reeducare)”
Sergiu MANDINESCU (1926-1964), ROMANIA,

De-aş avea o pană de înger
Şi cerneală de bezne,
Poate că abia atunci mi-ar fi lesne
Să mă adun din toate risipirile,
Să-mi scriu amintirile
Şi să spun tuturor de ce sânger.

Era o noapte jefuită de stele…

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Poetry in Translation (CXLVI): Sergiu MANDINESCU (1926-1964), ROMANIA, “Prison Warder”, “ Suflet de călău”

November 22nd, 2012 · No Comments · PEOPLE, Poetry, quotations, Translations

A muffled night
a bottomless abyss
a peacock’s cry
that never goes amiss.
Great panthers watching in the night
and tigers ready for the pounce,
the pythons flawlessly advance
a path so trite.
The shadow’s silence so profound
fills to the brim the darkest mind –
a jungle full of beasts of any kind,
but human soul is nowhere to be found!

(Rendered in English, from the Romanian original,
by Constantin ROMAN, London,
© 2012, Copyright Constantin ROMAN)

Sergiu MANDINESCU (1926-1964) – Biographical Note:

Sergiu Mandinescu was a son of Bucovina, who died prematurely at the age of 38, of which 14 years, between 1949 and 1963, were spent in the harshest Communist prisons: Jilava, Pitesti, Gherla, Aiud and more.
He died within one year of being released from prison, having barely had time to put pen to paper – his own poems that he memorized in the darkest prison cells.
Sergiu was only 23 years of age when he was imprisoned by the Communists and was discharged at the age of 37, only to pass away a year later.

Even after the demise of Ceausescu, 25 years after Mandinescu’s death, Romania was not ready to confront the demons of its past, as the “post-Communist” publishing houses still blackballed the publications of the poet’s verse. However, a handful of these appeared in print, first, before 1989, through the effort of the Romanian Diaspora and of late, in Romania, on the Internet and in some provincial literary magazines.
Considering the aforesaid, one can reasonably state, without fear of contradiction, that the conspiracy of silence is still alive and well in the Carpathian lands, in the guise of a pre programmed amnesia, through the good offices of overt and covert gremlins, perched in lucrative sinecures: the latter are at work, full time, like termites, until the whole shebang would implode: never too soon!

Addendum:
There seems to be no portrait extant of Sergiu Mandinescu, even though, given the assiduous efforts of the Romanian secret services, there ought to be some prison photos when he was indicted and therefore available in the late poet’s Securitate files.

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Poetry in Translation (CXXXIV): Paul STERIAN – poet of Romanian Communist Prisons – “I’m drunk again”, “Mă’mbăt mereu”

October 23rd, 2012 · 1 Comment · International Media, PEOPLE, Poetry, Translations

Paul STERIAN – poet of Romanian Communist Prisons

I’m drunk again
with this rich, confusing wine
I’m drunk with God!
God as inn keeper
God as wine
God as drinking mate.
why are you getting me drunk
why are you getting me confused
you heartless inn keeper
unerring companion
you, wine, sweetest poison?
might you be coveting my riches?
take them!
might you steal my thoughts?
take them!
might you take my happiness?
take it!
might you give me
your cross?
I take it!

(Rendered in English
by Constantin ROMAN, London,
© 2012, Copyright Constantin ROMAN)

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Poetry in Translation (CXXIII): Reinaldo ARENAS (1943, Cuba – 1990 New York), Poet Cubanez – “My Lover the Sea” – “Iubita mea Marea” – “NIÑO VIEJO”

September 20th, 2012 · 4 Comments · International Media, OPINION, PEOPLE, Poetry, quotations, Translations

Reinaldo Arenas (1943-1990)
Cuban revolutionary poet & author,
exiled in NYC under Castro

My Lover the Sea

I am that child with the round, dirty face
who on every corner bothers you with his
“can you spare a quarter?”

Sunt copilul acela cu faţa rotundă si murdară.
Care la orice colţ de stradă te plictiseşte cerşind:
“dă-mi un leu, domnule!”
Versiune în limba Română
de Constantin Roman
Londra, 20 September 2011,
© 2012, Copyright Constantin Roman

Yo soy ese niño de siempre
ante el panorama del inminente espanto.
Ese niño, ese niño,
ese niño que corrompe el poema con su nota naturalista.
Ese niño, ese niño,
ese niño que impone arduos y aburridos ensayos
y hasta novelas, aún más aburridas, sobre “los bajos fondos”.
Ese niño, ese niño,
ese niño de cara airada y sucia que impone arduas
y siniestras revoluciones
para luego seguir con su cara aún más airada y sucia.
Ese niño, ese niño
ese niño ante el panorama siempre inminente
(sólo inminente)
del inminente espanto, de la inminente lepra, del inminente
piojo,
del delito o del crimen inminentes.
Yo soy ese niño repulsivo que improvisa una cama
con cartones viejos y espera, seguro, que venga usted a
hacerle compañía.

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Poetry in Translation (XCI): Radu GYR – (Ridică-te, Gheorghe, ridică-te, Ioane!) Arise, brother Andrew, arise, brother John!

September 27th, 2011 · 4 Comments · PEOPLE, Poetry, quotations, Translations

Radu GYR – (Ridică-te, Gheorghe, ridică-te, Ioane!) Arise, brother Andrew, arise, brother John!

It is not for the sake of a bread on your table,
it is neither for pastures and nor for the stock,
it is rather for living a peace which is stable:
arise brother Andrew, arise brother Jock!

For the sake of your kinsmen who died in the ditches
for the hymns that you sang as you stood in the dock
for the tears of the heavens, as you pained in the shackles
arise brother Andrew, arise brother Jock!

It is not for the anger resounding your body
it’s instead for the sake of your cry to the world,
for the distant horizons with a brimful of planets,
arise brother Andrew, arise brother Jock!

If you wish to regain all the ancestral freedoms,
through the heavenly gates your admission to gain,
break to pieces the shackles which are cutting your body,
arise brother Andrew, arise brother Jock!

As prostrate you may wish once again to embrace
all that’s left from the blaze of your family’s hearth
they all gently come back to take hold of your soul
arise brother Andrew, arise brother Jock!

Arise brother Andrew, by freeing your shackles!
Arise brother Jock, back again on your bones!
Alight to the Heavens, the tempest abated,
arise brother Andrew, arise brother Jock!

(Rendered from Romanian by Constantin ROMAN, September 2011)

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POETRY IN TRANSLATION (XII): Dumitru Bacu (Vlach Poet) – “Grief”

February 23rd, 2003 · Comments Off on POETRY IN TRANSLATION (XII): Dumitru Bacu (Vlach Poet) – “Grief” · Diaspora, Poetry, Translations

“We do not grieve the wasted battles
Nor do we grieve the wounded chest
We grieve instead those arms in tatters,
Which cannot fight for want of rest.”

– – – – – – – – –
Note:
Dumitru Bacu, Political prisoner, Vlach Poet, Exile (“Pitesti”. Ed Atlantida, Bucharest,1991)
– – – – – – – – –
Translated from Romanian by:
Constantin Roman.

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