The City Cradled by Reality and Imagination. Reading “Vilniaus Varpai” by Kazys Bradūnas Cover Image

Tikrovėje ir vaizduotėje išsuptas miestas. Skaitant Kazio Bradūno „Vilniaus varpus“
The City Cradled by Reality and Imagination. Reading “Vilniaus Varpai” by Kazys Bradūnas

Author(s): Algis Kaleda
Subject(s): Lithuanian Literature, Theory of Literature
Published by: Lietuvos edukologijos universitetas
Keywords: Kazys Bradūnas; Vilnius topicality; sonnets; city’s sacredness; literary context;

Summary/Abstract: The article aims at describing and interpreting the first collection Vilniaus varpai (The Bells of Vilnius, 1943) by Kazys Bradūnas (1917–2009), one of the founders of the “Žemė” literary movement and the laureate of the Lithuanian National Prize for Culture and Arts (1992), and showing the significance of this book in author’s creative biography, in which Vilnius theme occupied a unique place. After the restoration of independence, Vilnius was the palace where the poet returned to live in 1994. It is important to note that the book was soon published for a second time in 1947 by “Patria Publishers” in a large volume of 3,300 copies. At the time, two other his collections, Pėdos arimuos (Footmarks in Plough) ir Svetimoji duona (Alien Bread), were already published. The Bells of Vilnius consists of seventeen sonnets, representing an emotional personal and national relationship of the whole generation with the recently regained capital of Lithuania. The symbolic leitmotiv, the bells, as well as the majestic beauty of Vilnius churches and the animated state of lyrical “I” create a sacred aura (poems “Cathedral,” “Gothic,” “Baroque,” “To Eternity,” and “In Rasos Cemetery”). The collection marks the beginning of Bradūnas’s poetic road, an individual interpretation of the city’s topicality, and a testimony to lasting links with the space. The goal of the article is to briefly discuss how the book coexists with the wider visual landscape of the city and its cultural artefacts, interpreted by various artists of different nationalities.

  • Issue Year: 19/2017
  • Issue No: 2
  • Page Range: 4-15
  • Page Count: 12
  • Language: Lithuanian