Zagajewski has been considered one of Poland’s most prominent contemporary writers. He won numerous literary awards, including The Neustadt International Prize for Literature (2004) and The Zhongkun International Poetry Prize (2014); the former is sometimes called ‘a small Nobel Prize’, the latter – ‘China’s Nobel Prize’. For many years Zagajewski was considered the Polish candidate for the Nobel Prize in Literature.
His debut poem Muzyka, published in 1967 in the magazine Zycie Literackie, was a prelude to a long and prolific literary career. Zagajewski has been considered a leading poet of the Generation of 1968, or Polish New Wave.
His literary works have received international recognition and have been translated into many languages, including English, French, Chinese, to name a few. Colm Toibin notes that in Zgajewski’s poems “he has succeeded in making the space of the imagination connect with experience; things seen and heard and remembered in all their limits and sorrow and relished joy have the same power for him as things conjured.”
The poet’s “Try To Praise The Mutilated World”, printed in The New Yorker and translated by Clare Cavanagh, gained world-wide recognition after the September 11th attacks.
RIP Adam Zagajewski 21 June 1945 – 21 March 2021