ON LANGUAGE, OPPRESSION AND POLITICAL CORRECTNESS. THE BAARDS OF WALES. IMRE KALANYOS , ARANY JÁNOS,SUJATA BHATT
In this Post, I revisit a poem which was inspired by a Hungarian Epic Poem from one of that countries´ most celebrated literary sons. Another is surely Imre Kalynos. Who with his memory of growing up in Stalin’s Russia he delivers this is a wonderful piece of writing. It overbrims with wisdom and lessons for the art of living.
Celtic Baards Speak Out.
And the Baards of wales would not give praises to the conquering Edward,
instead, they spoke words of truth in poem and song made insolence by violence of the Crown and they were burnt at the stake for the truth they Spake.
What principality this that burns its priests for speaking truth against the tyrant.
The Baards of Cymru Eire Cornwall Bretagne, Syntagma & St Pauls reach out to us across the energy of reincarnated spirit and language Past Heroes deeds and words emulated to assuage
As once the tyrant Tribute sought
These new Caesars take all yet offer nought
once more we offer Insolence in Poetry Song rhyme and reason to tell the truth, that’s painted Treason.
Original Poem By Roger Lewis.
After. Arany János’ masterpiece.
Arany János was Hungary’s greatest epic poet and wrote this poem shortly after the visit of Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph to Hungary following defeat in the 1848-49 revolution war. Originally intended to be a poem to praise the Emperor, Arany, Janos used the story that King Edward I of England had 500 baards executed after his conquest of Wales in 1277. The poem is set in Montgomery mid-Wales.
”Tierra y Libertad”
The extract below is but an hors d’oeuvre, To a sumptuous banquet that is the whole piece at the link.
|In the Elementary Scool of gordisa by Imre Kalanyos Friday, August 03, 2007 Rated “G” by the Author.|
´´ I did not understand how the people of Sívó could be Gypsies. Due to the discrimination they were subjected to however, I knew that within the Hungarian society, my community, like the Gypsies, was placed in a social stratum defined by the color of their skin. It was then that it became clear to me that the Hungarians called my villagers Gypsies for the same reason the ancient Greeks called the rest of the world Barbarians.´´
“Poems connected me to a world beyond my own. It was from poems that I learned a history that was not taught in my school. Poems made me aware of human feelings that were always part of human history but rarely revealed in the history books. One such poem was “The Bards of Wales” written by Arany János (John Gold). In the poem, the poet gave me a view on the Welsh people’s acceptance of their country’s annexation by King Edward. The poem, as I understood it, was a reflection of the feelings of the bards. In the thirteenth century, after conquering Wales, Edward I traveled on horseback throughout the country to assess what his gains were. During his travel, he ordered the bards to praise him in their poems. Some five hundred bards, one by one, were burned at the stake because they cursed him instead of praising him. It was that poem that made me understand how Hungarians felt about the Russian occupation of their country. From the poem, I learned that human feelings are part of ongoing history and that they cannot be dictated. It was from “The Bards of Wales” that I learned a universal truth: the truth that neither kings nor dictators or tyrants can dictate human feelings. I loved poems. They instilled in me a belief—a dream without which life had no meaning. From my literal understanding of Ady Endre’s poem titled “From the Rill to the Ocean,” I learned that to want is the door to possibilities; to want is human, and that one’s will make dreams come true . I was in the fourth grade when I memorized Ady’s poem.
I memorized it because it depicted the environment in which I was living and the conditions I hoped to climb out of.” ……
“Throughout my life in Hungary, it was Ady’s poem that kept my hopes alive. It was the compelling factor in my determination to leave the rill in the hopes of reaching the saint, the big Ocean. ”
On Language and oppression
Another favourite of mine is.
A poem from her book ‘Brunizem’ published in 1986
Sujata Bhatt is an Indian poet and native speaker of Gujarati (the language native to the west Indian region of Gujarat) born on the 6th of May 1956 in Ahmedabad and brought up in Pune until her family immigrated to the United States in 1968. Now residing in Bremen, Germany with her daughter and husband, she now works as a freelance writer and translates works of Gujarat poetry into English. Recognised as a distinctive voice in contemporary poetry, Bhatt has won many prestigious awards for her work.
Bhatt describes her childhood in India as “the deepest layer of my identity”. Even though she has said that she feels an immense amount of pride and love towards her mother tongue and her culture, Bhatt mainly speaks and writes in English.