Biography of Julian Tuwim
Julian Tuwim was a polish poet born in 1894. He was the leader of the Skamander group of experimental poets, he was also a major figure in his nation's literature. In his principal collection of poetry, Slowa we krwi [words bathed in blood] (1926), he wrote with fervor and violence of the emptiness of urban existence.
Tuwim spent his childhood and early school years in Lodz. Between 1916-1918 he studied law and philosophy in Warsaw. During that time he co-operated with various magazines and cabarets. During World War II he emigrated to Romania, France, Portugal, Brasil, and in 1942 to New York. There he wrote his major poem "Kwiaty Polskie" , in which he describes the time of his early childhood in Lodz. In June 1946 Tuwim returned to Poland. Between 1947-1950 he was the artistic director of Teatre Nowy in Lodz. He was awarded many times for his poetry, among them was the Literary Award of Lodz (1928, 1949), doctor honoris causa title by the University of Lodz (1949), Pen Club Award for translations from Puszkin (1935) and the national award (1951).
He died in 1953
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Julian Tuwim Poems
The Common Man
When plastered billboards scream with slogans 'fight for your country, go to battle' When media's print assults your senses, 'Support our leaders' shrieks and rattles...
A big locomotive has pulled into town, Heavy, humungus, with sweat rolling down, A plump jumbo olive. Huffing and puffing and panting and smelly,
The Dancing Socrates
I roast in the sun, old wretch... I lie, and yawn, I stretch. Old am I, but full of pep: When I take a slug from the cup
A box with paints from childhood's time: The colors of town are earth and grime. An old worker at a dark doorway squats,
Grass, grass up to my knees! Grow up to the sky So that there won't seem to be Any you or I
The Saturday Night Song
Hooray, the echo will resound throughout the wide square, When a sincere drunkard's song emanates from my throat;
My husband is idle, is dumb and spends money. He either stands still at the window or runs about town like a bunny.
The Dancing Socrates
I roast in the sun, old wretch...
I lie, and yawn, I stretch.
Old am I, but full of pep:
When I take a slug from the cup
My ancient bones bask in the sun's glow,
And my curly, wise, grey head.
In that wise head, like woods in spring
Hums and hums a wiser wine.
Eternal thoughts flow and flow,