Trafika Europe 5 - Slovenian Interlude

Ten poems

Tone Škrjanec

“Looking deeply into things and, by no means least of all, into other human beings implies meditating on brevity, on ephemerality—and this is what Škrjanec does… Essentially, he makes this query: if ‘everything’s temporary,’ as he states in ‘Noises are in the Air,’ can any depth or permanence whatsoever be found anywhere in our existences? And if every experience, every perception, is superficial and fleeting, what is the point of our aliveness?

“Yet if such questioning and self-questioning underlie his poems, he is by no means solemn, overbearing, lugubrious, or even overtly ‘poetic’ in his manner of carrying out these tasks. In fact, the questioning and self-questioning are left unstated in the margins, between the lines, or in the pre-text motivating or silently accompanying his poem. If he ruminates, he spares us the details. What he offers us, however, are flashes of something rather more lasting than fugacity… Call it ‘presence,’ for lack of a better term…” – John Taylor, Arts Fuse .

Poems translated from Slovenian by Ana Pepelnik and Matthew Rohrer.


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