Tomas Venclova – First and foremost – a poet (15/88)

I also managed to maintain proper,
friendly father-son relations with my father – a relation between a loving father and a loving son
right up to his death, and that’s something I am very happy about. And also, of course, with my mother. Well, my mother, she didn’t
have anything to do with politics And that’s enough for one to have a place
in Lithuanian literature if the texts are good, but she was the wife of a well known politician and as a consequence that same shadow
fell on her, too, to some degree. Well… and so when I graduated from university
I was clearly not pro-Soviet but rather anti-Soviet. I graduated from university… To tell the truth, I had begun to write
poems before graduating. I consider myself first and foremost a poet. Relatively speaking I haven’t written many,
all the poems I’ve written throughout my life were published recently in one book. There are only 204 works in it, which is relatively little. Lithuanian poets usually write about 1000,
several thousand poems, and I, a little over 200. Well, but Radauskas, to take an example
– whom I loved – also probably wrote about 200 poems. and Radauskas’s, without a doubt, are good. I can’t say anything about my own.

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