Announcing the programme of the 2024 Miłosz Festival | Miłosz Festival

Announcing the programme of the 2024 Miłosz Festival

Celebration of the poet’s birthday, outstanding international authors and the most important figures of the world of Polish poetry!

 Cynthia Haven, Yang Lian, Monika Herceg, Katja Gorečan, Dmitri Strocev, Yolanda Castaño and Hinemoana Baker are just some of the poets joining us for this year’s Miłosz Festival. The event is slated to start on 30 June – the birthday of Czesław Miłosz. The programme of Rescue – this year’s celebration of poetry in Kraków, features meetings with authors, debates, performative readings, discussions on the works by Czesław Miłosz, Anna Świrszczyńska, Adam Zagajewski and Andrzej Sosnowski, as well as talks with numerous Polish poets of the younger generation. This is the most important event of the Year of Czesław Miłosz!

 “The Miłosz Festival starts on 30 June, birthday of the author of ‘The Land of Ulro’. This year’s edition is going to be particularly long – it will run until 7 July,” says the Festival’s curator Szymon Kloska. Like every year, the event will be an interdisciplinary celebration of poetry. Once again, war and violence will be among the festival themes. Rescue is a volume that features some of Miłosz’s most important poetic texts written during the occupation. These accusatory and ruthless works ask questions about the attitude of those who witness violence, about passivity and opposing evil.

The book Czesław Miłosz: A California Life, the Polish edition of which will be officially released during the festival, will be showcased by its author Cynthia Haven. The acclaimed scholar will not only speak at a meeting concerning the Californian period of Czesław Miłosz’s life, but will also give a masterclass. These are not the only events dedicated to the poet’s oeuvre during the festival!

We will talk with Croatian author Monika Herceg, laureate of this year’s European Poet of Freedom Literary Award of the City of Gdańsk, about her Okres ochronny. In her poems, this acclaimed Croatian artist of the young generation weaves a story about her personal experience of war and being a refugee. In addition to poetry, she writes plays and works as an editor and screenwriter.

Yang Lian, one of the most important authors of contemporary Chinese poetry and a well-known advocate for freedom of expression will showcase his work to the festival audience. Recently, he won the Zbigniew Herbert International Prize for Literature.   It showcases a vast vision, a poetry so dense and rich that it evokes a sense of strangeness. It is a precious feeling and a challenge to encounter the unknown sensibility, to plunge into a new world,” was how poet Krystyna Dąbrowska, a member of the Award Jury, described his work.

During the eight-day festival of poetry in the heart of Krakow, participants will meet artists from different cultural backgrounds. We will be hosting Syrian poet Rasha Habbal (who will talk about her new book Czego jeszcze nie zaczęliśmy), Slovenian author Katja Gorečan, Belarusian author Dmitry Strocev, as well as Latvian poet Inga Gaile and Latvian poet and translator of Czesław Miłosz’s works Māris Salējs. Spanish author Yolanda Castaño, Hinemoana Baker from New Zealand, Riga-born Semyon Chanin and German authors – Birgit Kreipe and Nadja Küchenmeister – will also join us during the festival.

As part of the Critical Balance stream, we will meet the doyens of Polish poetry who will talk about their latest volumes and their creative endeavours to date. The list of invited guests includes Joanna Oparek, Marcin Sendecki and Marcin Baran. The festival also offers an opportunity to discover the latest volumes of poetry. Some of the premieres include volumes by Agata Puwalska, Anna Matysiak, Mariusz Grzebalski, Marcin Podlaski, Paweł Stasiewicz, Marcin Melecki and others.

The year 2024 marks the 40th anniversary of the death of one of the most important Polish poets of the 20th century – Anna Świrszczyńska. It is also the best opportunity to revisit the work of this distinguished author, who was promoted by Czesław Miłosz himself both in Poland and in the English-speaking world, especially in view of a resurgence of her poetry, which will be covered in detail by Katarzyna Szopa, author of the phenomenal monograph Wybuch wyobraźni. Poezja Anny Świrszczyńskiej wobec reprodukcji życia społecznego.

Andrzej’s poetry will feature prominently in the event’s programme. His poems will be read by Joanna Łępicka, Agata Puwalska, Przemek Suchanecki, Agnieszka Wolny-Hamkało and Radosław Jurczak, and the poet will talk about his work with Joanna Orska and Radosław Jurczak.


Poetic releases

A number of book premieres, including volumes of poetry, will await the festival goers. The Land of Urlo and Rescue, reissued by the Znak publishing house, are true treasures for lovers of Miłosz’s poetry. The readers will also have the opportunity to read the collection of the poet’s letters to Tymoteusz Karpowicz, written in 1965-2003. Volumes by international authors, including Hinemoana Baker, Natalia Belchenko, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Louise Glück, Katja Gorečan, Rasha Habal, Dmitri Strocev and Pablo Neruda, will also be available for purchase. The festival will also see the releases of publications by Polish authors, including  Marcin Baran, Zygmunt Fick, Wojciech Kopiec, Joanna Oparek, Agata Puwalska, Marcin Podlaski, Marcin Sendecki, Andrzej Sosnowski, Paweł Stasiewicz and Adam Zagajewski.


Admission to all events is free of charge with a complimentary pass available two weeks before the festival at and via the KBF: PLUS app. The full programme for the event will be available soon at The festival centre will be located at the Potocki Palace.

The Miłosz Festival is organised by: The City of Kraków and the Krakow Festival Office, operator of the Kraków: UNESCO City of Literature programme.


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