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● ­­­ ­­­­­ ­. ­­ ­ ­­­ ­, ­?
– ­ ­ ­ ­­ ­­ ­­. ­ ­­ ­, ­ ­­ ­ ­ ­­ ­­­ ­, ­. ­­ ­ ­ ­ ­ ­ . ­ ­, ­ ­­ ­ ­­­ ­, ­ ­­­­ ­­ ­ ­­­ ­­.
● ­­ ­­ ­­ ­­­­ ­ ­­, ­­ ­ ­ ­­­ ­ ­­ ­­­ ­­, ­­­ ­­­ ­­­ ­, ­­­ ­ ­­ ­ ­­, ­ ­­ ­­ ­­.
­ ­­­ ­­­ ­­­ ­­­ ­, ­­­­ ­ ­­ ­, ­­, ­, ­­ ­­, ­ ­ ­­­ ­­­. ­­­ ­ ­ ­ ­­ ­­­, ­ ­­ ­­ ­ ­­ ­­, ­­­­ ­ ­­­­ ­­­­ ­ ­?
– ­­­ ­­ ­ ­ ­­­. ­­­ ­­­ ­­ ­ ­­­. ­­ ­ ­ ­­ ­ ­ ­ ­­­, ­ ­ ­­­. ­ ­ ­ ­ ­­ ­­ ­­­ ­­­ ­­ ­. ­­­ ­ ­ ­ ­ ­­­ ­­ ­. ­ ­­­ ­ ­­­ ­­­ ­­, ­ ­­­, ­­, ­­, ­­­ ­­ ­­, ­­­, ­, ­­ ­. ­­­ ­ ­­­­ ­ ­­­ ­. ­­­ ­ ­­­ ­­ ­ ­­ ­­­; ­­­­ ­­ ­ ­­ ­­ ­; ­ ­­­ ­­­­ ­­­; ­ ­­.
● ­ ­­­ ­­­­ ­­­ ­ ­­ ­­­­, ­ ­­­ ­­­ ­­ ­ ­­­ ­­ ­ ­­ , ­­­­­ ­­­­ ­­­, ­­. ­ ­­ ­­­ ­ ­­?
– ­ ­­­ ­­­ ­ ­ ­ ­­­, ­ ­­­ ­­­ ­­­ ­ ­­ ­­­ ­­ ­­­, ­­ ­­­ ­­ ­­ ­­ ­­­ ­­ ­­. ­ ­ ­ ­ ­ ­, , ­ ­, ­­ ­ ­­­ ­ ­ ­ ­­­ ­ ­­ ­. ­­ ­­ ­­­ ­­­­­ ­­­ ­­. ­ ­ ­­­ ­ ­ ­ ­ ­­.
● ­ ­­ ­­­ ­ ­­­?
– ­ ­­ ­­ ­­ ­­­ ­; ­ ­­ ­­­, ­ ­­ ­­­­­ ­­­­, ­­ ­ ­ ­ ­ ­­­, ­ ­­­ ­­ ­­­ ­­ ­­­­. ­ ­­­­ ­­­ ­ ­­, ­­ ­­ ­, ­­ ­­ ­ ­­­, . ­­­­ ­ ­ ­ ­­ ­­­­ ­­­.
● ­­­ ­ ­­­ ­­, ­­­ ­­­ ­­, ­­­, ­­, ­­ ­­? ­ ­ ­­­ ­ ­?
– ­­­ ­­­­ ­ ­­­, ­­­, ­, ­ ­ ­ ­­ ­­­­­ ­. ­­­ ­ ­­­­­­­ ­, ­­­ ­ ­ ­ ­­­, ­­ . ­ ­ ­­ ­­­, ­ ­­ ­­ ­­­ ­­ , ­­­ ­ ­­, ­­­ ­­­­­. ­­ ­­­, ­ ­­­, ­ ­­ ­­­­, ­­ ­­ ­­­­. ­­­­­ ­­­ ­­, ­ ­ ­ ­­ ­­ ­ ­­ ­­­.

*

­ ­ ­ 1960. ­­ ­. ­­­ 1984. ­ ­­ ­­ ­­ (Hvæsen­de ved mit øjekast). ­­ 17 ­­, ­­­ ­ ­, ­­­ ­ ­ ­­, ­­ ­­ ­ ­ ­­­­ ­­ (Sølvtråden), ­­­ ­ (Ma­rok­kansk Mo­tiv), ­­ (Ame­ri­cas) ­ ­­­ (In­vi­ta­tion til at rej­se). ­ ­­­ ­­ ­­ ­­ – 2000. ­ ­­­ ­­ 2006. ­ ­­ ­­ (Liv­sstil), 2012. ­ ­­ ­­ ­­ ­ ­­­. ­­ ­ ­ ­­. ­ ­­ ­­ ­ ­­, ­­ ­ ­­, ­ ­­ ­ ­­­ ­­­. ­­ ­­­ ­­ ­ (He­steæ­der­ne) ­ ­ ­ ­ ­­ ­­­ ­ ­ ­­ ­­ ­­­ ­­­ ­­ ­ ­­ ­­. ­­­ ­ ­ ­­­ ­­­ ­ (­­­­ ­­­­, ­­ ­­­, ­­­ ­­, ­­­ ­­­, ­­­ ­­­­ ­­ ­­ ­­­­ ­), ­ ­ ­ ­­­, ­ ­­ – ­­ ­­. ­­ ­ ­ ­­ ­­ ­­­ ­­­­ – ­­ ­ ­­ ­­ ­­, ­ ­ ­ ­ ­­­­. ­­­ ­­­ ­­ ­ ­­­, ­­­ ­ ­­ ­­ ­­ ­­ ­­ ­­ ­.

Po­e­try is the co­re of cre­a­ti­ve lan­gu­a­ge

An In­ter­vi­ew with Tho­mas Bo­berg

In­ter­vi­e­wer Jo­van Zi­vlak

● It is a well-known fact that your fat­her was a sur­re­a­list pa­in­ter. Did that af­fect your de­ci­sion to be­co­me an ar­tist, a wri­ter?
– I did not know who my real fat­her was un­til I tur­ned 15. As a child and te­e­na­ger I used to draw, at one po­int I dre­a­med of be­ing a vi­sual ar­tist, a pa­in­ter. La­ter I re­a­li­zed that it was a bad idea for me to fol­low in my fat­her’s fo­ot­steps. I stop­ped dra­wing, I felt an emp­ti­ness in­va­ding my li­fe, then at 19 I di­sco­ve­red po­e­try and wri­ting.
● Tra­vel li­te­ra­tu­re is your an­swer to the li­fe cho­i­ces you ha­ve ma­de, to be a wri­ter who di­sco­vers spa­ce and cul­tu­re of va­ri­o­us na­ti­ons, try to un­der­stand so­me­o­ne who is dif­fe­rent and the ot­her, di­sco­ver the con­di­ti­ons in which a con­ver­sa­tion is pos­si­ble, whe­re li­te­ra­tu­re as a di­a­lo­gue is pos­si­ble.
Alt­ho­ugh you ha­ve writ­ten se­ve­ral tra­vel me­mo­irs, in­spi­red by your stay in Pe­ru, the Ame­ri­cas and Afri­ca, and you ha­ve al­so writ­ten a no­vel, your main fi­eld of in­te­rest is po­e­try. What can po­e­try do in this world with its dis­tin­cti­ve eco­nomy, its use of the lan­gu­a­ge that con­den­ses and post­po­nes, dra­ma­ti­zes and cre­a­tes di­sil­lu­si­ons on the ru­ins of the new world?
– Po­e­try was the do­or for me to the world of li­te­ra­tu­re. Po­e­try is the co­re of cre­a­ti­ve lan­gu­a­ge that is the fa­sci­na­tion in my ca­se. With ti­me I re­a­li­zed, that much of my ex­pe­ri­en­ce co­uld not be tran­sfor­med in­to po­e­try, so I star­ted to wri­te tra­vel me­mo­ries. I al­ways try to wri­te pro­se, which con­ta­ins part of the in­ten­se at­mosp­he­re of the lyri­cal spi­rit. I don’t know if po­e­try can do anything in this world to chan­ge the way of things. I do not fancy po­e­try with a cle­ar ide­o­lo­gi­cal or po­li­ti­cal mes­sa­ge, tho­ugh po­e­try in my ca­se of co­ur­se mir­rors the wa­ves of ti­me, po­li­tics, ideas, the chan­ges of so­ci­ety. Po­e­try is a way of se­e­king in­sight and cer­tain truths. Po­e­try is he­re and will exist as long as hu­ma­nity exists, it is the most di­rect way to ex­pe­ri­en­ce tro­ugh lan­gu­a­ge, it is dif­fi­cult to cor­rupt po­e­try, it is not re­ally for sa­le.
● Af­ter the re­a­li­za­tion of strong neo-avant-gar­de uto­pi­as of the 1960s and 1970s and its expan­si­on in va­ri­o­us re­gi­ons of the world of re­a­lity and art, the­re was an ap­pe­a­se­ment of the gro­und, a post­mo­dern and post-hi­sto­ric ni­hi­lism, and a sort of fa­ti­gue. Is your po­e­tic dysto­pia in con­nec­tion with that ap­pe­a­se­ment?
– My la­test po­e­try is a kind of lyri­cal nar­ra­ti­ve, per­haps a sort of night­ma­rish pa­ro­di­cal dysto­pia which lan­gu­a­ge ­wi­se in­tends to chal­len­ge the fi­nan­cial, cul­tu­ral and re­li­gi­o­us wa­ves and clas­hes we are wit­nes­sing the­se years. You might say part of so­ci­ety in Eu­ro­pe expe­ri­en­ces a fa­ti­gue, but on the ot­her hand we see lar­ge num­bers of re­fu­ge­es fle­e­ing from wars and po­verty in the Mid­dle East and Afri­ca. We see the ri­sing of ra­di­cal na­ti­o­na­lisms along with the ra­di­cal Islam. My new po­e­try is bat­tling right the­re in that zo­ne of con­flict.
● How do you see the con­tem­po­rary Da­nish po­e­try?
– We are wit­nes­sing a re­vi­val of po­e­try in Den­mark, the new po­ets are di­rect, and of­ten li­te­rally au­to­bi­o­grap­hic, we li­ve in a fast chan­ging and still mo­re in­se­cu­re world, and it se­ems that po­e­try is part of a spi­ri­tual re­ac­tion to this com­plex si­tu­a­tion. The youn­ger ge­ne­ra­ti­ons con­tain strong vo­i­ces, using so­cial me­dia, they cre­a­te blogs for the­ir po­ems and so on. Pu­blis­hing a bo­ok is just one way of expres­sing po­e­try.
● Do­es po­e­try in Den­mark ha­ve its re­a­der­ship, an in­ten­si­ve pu­blis­hing cul­tu­re, ma­ga­zi­nes, awards and sup­port from the sta­te? What pla­ce do­es po­e­try hold in Da­nish so­ci­ety?
– Po­e­try de­fi­ni­tely has its re­a­ders, but po­e­try as al­ways and everywhe­re is much less read than no­vels and cri­me-sto­ri­es. Po­e­try is not co­mer­ci­a­li­zed in that way, you don’t wri­te po­e­try with a dre­am of sel­ling bo­oks, of co­ur­se not. In Den­mark we ha­ve an art fo­un­da­tion, every co­un­try with a de­cent eco­nomy ought to, out of dig­nity and self-re­spect, sup­port art and cul­tu­re. We ha­ve so­me, not many, ma­ga­zi­nes, so­me of the ma­ga­zi­nes exist on­li­ne and re­a­dings are get­ting mo­re po­pu­lar. The in­te­rest for po­e­try is the­re, tho­ugh I don’t think that Den­mark as a na­tion ve­ne­ra­tes and ap­pre­ci­a­tes po­e­try suf­fi­ci­ently.

Pre­veo Dra­gan Ba­bić

*

Tho­mas Bo­berg was born in Ro­skil­de, Den­mark in 1960. He de­bu­ted with a po­e­try col­lec­tion Hvæsen­de ved mit øjekast (The His­sing on my Glan­ce) in 1984. Star­ting when he was 17, he tra­vel­led all over the world, espe­ci­ally the So­uth and Mid­dle Ame­ri­ca, and he re­ce­i­ve gre­at cri­ti­cal ac­cla­im with his tra­vel me­mo­ries Sølvtråden (Sil­ver Li­ne), Ma­rok­kansk Mo­tiv (The Ma­ro­cain Mo­tif), Ame­ri­cas (The Ame­ri­cas) and In­vi­ta­tion til at rej­se (An In­vi­ta­tion to a Tra­vel). He has been no­mi­na­ted twi­ce for the Nor­dic Co­un­cil’s Li­te­ra­tu­re Pri­ze – in 2000 for Ame­ri­cas and in 2006 for Liv­sstil (Li­fe Style), a po­e­try col­lec­tion, whi­le in 2012 he re­ce­i­ved the Grand Pri­ze of the Da­nish Aca­demy. He al­so re­ce­i­ved a num­ber of ot­her awards. His li­te­rary work is ba­sed on de­si­re and re­stles­sness and in­clu­des a num­ber of po­e­try col­lec­ti­ons, a no­vel and se­ve­ral tra­vel me­mo­irs. In his po­e­tic tri­logy He­steæ­der­ne (The Hor­se Ea­ters), Tho­mas Bo­berg pa­ints a dark and dysto­pian so­ci­ety ru­led by de­spots and fa­na­tics, whe­re in­di­vi­du­als are bro­ught to the ed­ge of the­ir exi­sten­ce. This tri­logy fe­a­tu­res se­ve­ral con­flic­ted gro­ups (wor­shi­pers of the half-Moon, Chri­stian pa­tri­ots, im­mi­grant sla­ves, ni­hi­li­stic pri­ests, con­sul’s ni­hi­li­stic sons and his hor­se whip­pers) fig­hting for lit­tle that is left, and the­re is al­so a con­flict bet­we­en two de­spots – Con­sul and Ca­liph. The fu­tu­re that the lyric su­bject de­scri­bes is very pes­si­mi­stic – a de­stroyed­ city is go­ver­ned by ho­pe­les­sness and vi­o­len­ce, whi­le the hor­ses are bro­ught to the po­int of extin­cti­on be­ca­u­se of the­ir me­at. The tri­logy is cri­ti­cally ac­cla­i­med, whi­le its al­le­go­ri­cal pro­jec­tion of re­a­lity spar­ked a gre­at de­ba­te abo­ut the so­cial re­a­lity in Den­mark.


 
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