The May festival of poetry in Krakow

The Miłosz Festival is a sacred time of encounters with poetry. The diversity of proposals is guaranteed by the division of the program into separate blocks – meetings with guests, debates, workshops, exhibitions, a conference on haiku and a series of events addressed to the youngest audience. Between the 14th and the 17th of May, poetry will rule in Krakow. We present the full program of the Festival.

Poetry at the festival has many faces and a full array of colours. You can see this immediately by looking at this year’s list of festival guests, which will include names from various parts of the world. Our guests will be Yuri Andrukhovych, Xavier Farré, Robert Hass, Marie Lundquist, Valzhyna Mort, Alice Oswald, Ruth Padel, Kornelijus Platelis, Aleś Razanaŭ, Charles Simic and Uroš Zupan. Obviously, the festival could not do without a strong representation of Polish poets, including Wojciech Bonowicz, Julia Fiedorczuk, Wioletta Grzegorzewska, Klara Nowakowska, Marta Podgórnik, Krzysztof Siwczyk, Michał Sobol, Dariusz Sośnicki and Dariusz Suska.

During four days between Thursday the 14th of May and Sunday the 17th of May, there will be many meetings with readers and debates. On the first day of the Festival, Zofia Król will host the debate Księgi użyteczne [Useful books] about contemporary poetry – the one that is objective, loyal to reality and “useful” for the reader. On Friday, during the debate Przyrodzie pogróżka [A threat to nature] hosted by Krzysztof Zając, we will listen to a discussion about the compatibility of words with things, ecological literature and the things that a poet-scientist can communicate to humankind. During the Saturday debate Pochwała przekładu [The praise of translation], Magda Heydel will ask what the translation of poetry means, why this challenge is undertaken and what role is played by translation in modern literary culture.

Poetry evenings are a traditional part of the Miłosz Festival. They will be opened with Księga olśnień [The book of luminous things] on Thursday, in which all guests of the festival will take part. On Friday evening, we invite you to attend Requiem dla poetów [A requiem for poets] – a meeting dedicated to the late authors and their works, including Seamus Heaney, Mark Strand, Stanisław Barańczak, Tomaž Šalamun, Juan Gelman, Tadeusz Różewicz, Philip Levine and Tomas Tranströmer. On Saturday, an exceptional event will take place in Metaforma Cafe: Republica Poetica – a poetry marathon with the participation of Spanish-speaking guests from Chile, Spain and Mexico and Polish poets.

The last day of the festival – Sunday – will begin with a poetry picnic in the Garden of Józef Mehoffer’s House, and the culmination of that day will be a concert by Yuri Andrukhovych and the Karbido band in Re Club.

Festival events will be accompanied by the 2nd International Haiku Conference – we particularly recommend a lecture Haiku in the sphere of interests of Czesław Miłosz by Agnieszka Żuławska-Umeda.

For three consecutive days from Thursday till Saturday, events prepared by the Festival of Literature for Children will also be held. The attractions addressed to the youngest participants in the festival will include, among others, a workshop with the illustrator Maciej Szymanowicz, a family city game Magia literatury [The magic of literature] and a meeting with Jerzy Stuhr and Marianna Bończa-Stuhr, who wrote and illustrated the book Kto tam zerka na Kacperka? [Who is peeping at Kacperek over there?]

The full program of the Festival can be found here: LINK