Eugeniusz Tkaczyszyn-Dycki

5 poems


give me the words to name limits
as accurately as limits
and let me dance within them (so
I may joyously turn circles

which will be circles of nothingness
and my limits) and may I comprehend
may I not be chased by madness out of
the house for where will

inspiration lead me if not towards Our Lord


I am visited by those who
are no longer here (Jasiejo,
Jasiunio i Jasieczko) perhaps that’s why
I meet them as without their presence

there would be no Dycio a fact
widely known though none
can equal my mother’s illness
not even after meths

(not even Grenio) though I am
visited by those without whom
I would be nothing pal and that’s
nothing to do with said meths


I still don’t know how to say Poland
still struggle to utter in a single
breath Poland and Ukraine Fatherland
and Motherland a word bereft of a future

what does it mean: Mother in the graves
of her sons they know about it
those born yesterday in long
forgotten heroic hymns

why can I still not manage the
word Poland when so many
having feasted on it
torment others


a friend is someone who comes round
your house with a stack of books
and cares for nothing least of all
themselves when you ask after their health

a friend is someone who at some undefined
hour comes round your house
and does not leave you with a stack of five
six books but gracefully

recounts where they’ve been and by whose grave
they first learnt the truth about themselves


10 fingers meaning 10 schizophrenic pigs
10 fingers and how to feed oneself once more
to one more swine when illness haunts us
with the saggy buttocks of other sufferers

10 schizophrenic fingers ready at an arm’s
length so how can you call 10 fingers a single
flower in the muck left behind especially for me
by the countless ill in their dirty sheets

10 fingers meaning 10 schizophrenic pigs
expelled by the runs and no one knows against
whom and why one should vaccinate in dirty
sheets I am ever more Polish-speaking

the original PL/EN  in pdf versions here

Eugeniusz Tkaczyszyn-Dycki (born in 1962) is an award-winning Polish poet. Born in Wólka Krowicka near Lubaczów, he is the author of nine volumes of poems and numerous texts for the magazine Kresy. He has won the Kazimiera Iłłakowiczówna Award, the Barbara Sadowska Award, Polish-German Days of Literature Award, Gdynia Literature Award, the “Passport of Polityka” and the Nike – Poland’s most prestigious literary prize.

Eugeniusz Tkaczyszyn-Dycki – Poeta, urodzony w roku 1962 w Wólce Krowickiej koło Lubaczowa. Laureat Nagrody Literackiej im. Barbary Sadowskiej (1995), Nagrody Niemiecko-Polskich Dni Literatury w Dreźnie (1998), Nagrody Literackiej Gdynia (2006 i 2009) oraz Hubert Burda Preis (2007) i Nike (2009). Mieszka w Warszawie.

translation : Marek Kazmierski, OFF_PRESS