Halina Poświatowska (1935-1967)
My beloved asked me: Do you believe in life after
death? I answered: I will believe, but only when
a rose, which blossomed this evening in our garden,
will give off its scent after the death of all its
petals. My beloved asked me: Do you want to go to
heaven? I will — I answered — but only when the
heaven is as warm as your arms, as ample as your
breath and as wild as a kiss. My beloved asked me:
Will you love me always? I answered: If eternity
is the moment between my empty heart and my heart
full of love, there will never be a time such that
I don’t love you.
Halina Poświatowska was poet and writer, very important figure in the literature of the modern Poland, one of the poètes maudit.
When she was 10 years old girl, she fell ill. It brought about a heart defect. Her whole life was about fighting for life, being in hospitals.
One time she went to the sanatorium. During time being there, she deeply and truly fell in love with a painter, Adolf Poświatowski, her future husband. He also suffered from a heart disease.
I don't know what I love more
you or the longing after you
the kisses or the desire of kisses
I thought that I would never again write poems
and now my body has swelled up like a river
and stepped out of its banks -- like a river
and a quick stream snatches away the words
carries off the words
and they all speak of my love
of my longing
of my desire renewing itself like the moon
dimming in the sun of your glance
In the one of her letters, we can read she noticed that he couldn’t enjoy life, spinning in the dance, kissing. She made a decision. She wanted to teach him joy.
I found out that once of these attempts brought her on the edge with death. She was dancing fast. At some time she felt a lump in the throat. She knew that feeling. She run away from crowded place, which was dance hall. Breathing deeply hasn’t helped her. She begun to walk to the sanatorium. Lumping got more and more intensive. Between catching breaths, she was screaming: “Mum! I don’t want to die!”. Just drop of the blood saved her life.
When they visited a doctor together, he told them: ” These two hearts together… It’s a suicide. If you were separated, perhaps you would have some chances, but not together”.
He was absolutely right. He died 2 years after the wedding. It seems she stayed on the Earth just to sing along the song of their eternal love.
She was made for loving. Her diseased heart was pumping blood for one thing - love. He was island of some kind of saving for her. His arms used to make fear of death go away.
The main themes of her poetry were: love, will to live and death. All in one.
One time she wanted to die, because living was too hard without her beloved and with the sickness. Another time she writes that she hangs on the neck of the life, like it was her lover, and she would die if it walks away…
I love her poetry. She didn’t have to use complicated metaphors. Her life was so tragic that simple words was enough to make reader suffer with her.