Alexander Korotko: «… Inspiration is given to us from heaven”»
There is a philosophical category: the man of the world. This multifaceted concept includes open mind, adherence to humanistic principles, tolerance, understanding of other cultures, religions, traditions. The above stated is fully about a brilliant and out of the ordinary personality, a contemporary Ukrainian writer, Alexander Korotko. His metaphorical language is simple and at the same time characterized by emotional richness, graceful sensuality and depth of thought.
Korotko’s works, especially his poetry, are understandable anywhere in the world: in the countries of Eastern Europe, Central Europe, North and South America, as he writes about the human soul, the inner world. His poetic messages leave a spiritual mark on a person’s soul and heart. The author clearly understands that the material world is what everyone sees with the eyes, but the poet’s main tool is a spiritual vision, which allows him to see what many people cannot contemplate in everyday life. And everything that is seen by the author and embodied by him in the word gives spiritual strength to the reader.
Alexander Korotko is extremely demanding with himself: understanding perfectly that peace is nothing more than a form of passive degradation, he is always searching, always on the move.
Developing the spiritual qualities in himself, the poet strives for an acute perception of the world, for the constant presence of a sense of newness: he has a marked instinct for his own spiritual preservation.
It is possible to know the works of Alexander Korotko and listen to the author’s reading, by visiting the site or the Facebook page, because the author’s voice is unique, it is his spiritual substance.
Alexander Korotko on creativity (from an interview by the writer to online editions)
«… In addition to talent or gift, you need to have a talent to work. Continuous development of figurative thinking is the key when creating new ideas and plots. Meanwhile, it is necessary to be in a state of constant struggle with oneself – with laziness, inertia and stereotypes. A writer must not only keep up with the times, but he must also pass them … ”
«… Inspiration is given to us from heaven. It is there or it is not there. Of course, it is not a simple process: it is, above all, an activity of the soul and heart. I draw inspiration from what I have seen, read, heard, understood … ”
«… What distinguishes a good poet from a” craftsman”? Freedom of spirit, flight, imagination. The poems of a good poet are visible. When you read a real poem, you not only hear it, but you also see it – practically you are in a cinema hall, where there is only one spectator, and that spectator is you, the reader. You always want to go back to good poetry and, re-reading it, you always discover new facets. It doesn’t happen by chance, because in this poem there are always the sparks of the divine … ”
«… It is better not to engage in literary writing at all, if, before starting the work, you think about how to please the reader. Allow me to express a provocative thought: for a creative person, a category such as the reader should not be present on his coordinate axis. It is up to the reader to find his/her own writer and, meanwhile, to realize that understanding what has been written is a process no less creative than creating a work.
The world is multifaceted and true literature is not a phenomenon of mass culture, it cannot have many admirers. Real reading is a chamber thing, even an intimate one. First of all it is a spiritual experience and an existential emotion … ”
“… Only through suffering we repent and purify ourselves. In my opinion, poetry is not only autobiographical, it is all interwoven, like a person, with cells of pain, and love is no exception. Another thing is that you can suffer in different ways. The important thing is not how you get into this state, but how you get out of it. If suffering is a labyrinth that you don’t know how to get out of, then this is a disaster. Before entering, look where the exit is … ”
Thoughts derived from the translation of the verses into Hebrew
The text of the translation cannot be a faithful copy of the original. As paradoxical as it may seem, a translator needs a strong passion and no less inspiration than an author of poetry. Sometimes it seems to me that translating is much more difficult than writing poetry alone.
If the translation is a faithful copy of the original, the poems die, wither like flowers, and turn into a dried herbarium, where there is no soul, no emotion, no vitality.
Translation is the reading, understanding of the poet’s verbal memory, the entry into his subconscious, where the words of the language in which the author writes have been preserved.
The translation from Russian into Hebrew is the Exodus from Egypt to Eretz Yisrael, it is a difficult journey through the desert, and it is very difficult to reach the goal. It is a colossal daily work of the heart and soul, and if something goes wrong you lose your way, as it happened so many times to our ancestors during forty years of wandering in the desert.
About translation and translators
I would like to share my experience of working with translators. I believe that poets, and not just poets, but most creative people generally, by their nature, are perfectionists. But as far as poets are concerned, all those who find themselves in front of the translations of their works want to get a perfect result and dream that the translation does not discredit the original. As it comes from my personal experience, it is almost impossible to achieve this with the existing traditional approach.
Firstly, to assess the quality of the translation, you need to know at least the language they are translating you into. Secondly, you need to realize not only that the translator understands what he translates, but also how much he loves and admires your poem.
Excuse the pathos, but the translator should have a state of falling in love, indeed, I would say more, of passion, which he should pursue while working with an author’s work.
But this, alas, is not enough. So there is some thought of the mystical, irrational aspect. It was desired that the stars be in tune and that the author’s personal acquaintance with his unique and particular translator took place. And it is important that this knowledge continues and develops until the translation is complete. Fortunately, today’s media allow you to do this.
Because people relate or don’t relate, it’s like love at first sight. Everything needs to coincide.
Only with this combination, however paradoxical it may seem, does the author have the chance to obtain a translation that will not differ from the original.
And finally. I wouldn’t be so strict in my reasoning if I didn’t have the result I wrote about.
Some additions to my essay, which I consider “Instruction for the translation of poetry”
“When can we talk about the result? A good result can come out of the pen if the translator
1) has a flair for the source language and accurately conveys light, music, colors and the emotional series of the poem
2) has “the same poetic blood” as the translated author: if their poetic platforms coincide, he understands and accepts the author’s sensual and spiritual world
3) and the author, both fall into a state of resonance.
It is perfect when the author and the translator coincide in time and space (permanence on earth), so that they can communicate not only virtually (the contemporary communication options allow this).