Pardon me while I dig into my roots a little bit for today’s poem. I was born in Poland and I emigrated to Canada when I was four years old. I still speak Polish, although my vocabulary and grammar are somewhat stunted. Still, I like to keep my heritage alive by occasionally delving into the rich history of Polish literature. I’m proud to say that we have such a history. There are many Polish writers and poets who have written oodles of wonderful things. One of my favourites is Julian Tuwim.
He is the third poet that I am featuring that writes with Romantic characteristics, leading me to believe that I like Romantic poets most of all.
I first heard this poem shortly before my father passed away. I was staying with them in the early spring of last year and we got onto the subject of Polish writers. My father had his laptop open and he Youtubed this video. It blew my mind. I will always remember this moment–a calm, wonderfully poignant moment–in the midst of a really bad time in our lives. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about my dad and so this poem is a salve on the grief that I’m still coming to terms with. I miss my dad everyday. I’m glad that he was a man of letters who loved words as much as I do.
While I don’t read a lot of Polish anymore, my childhood memories are filled with Polish verses. I have several books of children’s poems that entertained me immensely growing up. I’ll share more over the course of this project!
Lokomotywa by Julian Tuwim
You don’t need to be Polish to understand this poem. All you have to have is ears. Julian utilized the language he wrote in to illustrate, not just write, this poem about a locomotive. In fact, “Lokomotywa” directly translates into The Locomotive. Just listen as the three speakers show you how a locomotive sounds when it pulls into a station. See how you don’t need to understand the words to get the picture? Awesome, isn’t it?