Felix Batoryn – Дзве мовы аднае душы (Two languages, one soul)

This book presents the poetry by Batoryn in Belarusian and Yiddish.


Felix Batoryn – Дзве мовы аднае душы (Two languages, one soul)
Litographs: Juryj Krupiankoŭ
hochroth Minsk
Berlin, 2024
ISBN 978-3-949850-43-1
Languages: Belarusian and Yiddish

“Дзве мовы аднае душы” (“Two languages, one soul”) is probably the shortest book by a poet who caught the free spirit of the sixties and has kept it to this day. The brevity of many of his statements proves that the author is no stranger to German classical poetry with its desire for self-restraint (Dichten = to condense!). However, Jewish tradition also teaches not to scatter words, and Felix Batoryn is a traditionalist in a good sense. A dozen poems in Belarusian, a little more in Yiddish. The nature and the city, the past and the present – all life’s manifestations are interesting to the poet. But it is not in the big city and not in the distorted present that he is looking for his ideal. That is why the poems are marked with nostalgia. But at the same time, there is the faith in the future. The author shuns slogans, pompous rhetoric, rampant emotions. Sometimes he is also overcome by despair. If I were asked to find one name for Batoryn’s poems (of different times, themes and languages), I would say that they are quiet hymns to life and freedom. In general, this collection is a worthy presentation of the work of my fellow countryman. (Volf Rubinčyk, Minsk, 2024)

Felix Batoryn (Chajmovič Felix Barysavič) is a Belarusian writer, translator and novelist. He was born on February 5, 1948, in Minsk. He received a higher medical education in Minsk and worked as a doctor for forty years. His literary debut was in 1967. Batoryn writes in Belarusian and Yiddish. He translates into Belarusian from German, Yiddish, Hebrew, Russian and Polish. He is the author of six poetry books in Belarusian and one in Yiddish. He also wrote the documentary short novel “Чорны год” (“Black Year”) about the beginning of the anti-fascist resistance in the Minsk ghetto during World War II.