2005. január 12. - Barron Arts
Center, 582 Rahway Avenue, Woodbridge, NJ 07095
REMEMBERING NICHOLAS KOLUMBAN
The noted Hungarian-American poet was
by his fellow poets at the event organized by Paul Sohar
Photoreport: István Sohár
KOLUMBAN was born in Budapest, Hungary. He moved to the US after
the Hungarian Revolution in 1956. He received an M.A. in German
literature at Pennsylvania State University and completed
courses toward a Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota. For
several years he taught German literature at a university in the
South; he also taught English and creative writing in high
school, and English as a second language at a community college.
His prose, poems,
essays and translations have appeared in 10 books and over 150
literary magazines in North America and Middle Europe, including
American Poetry Review, Another Chicago Magazine, Black Swan
Review, and ONTHEBUS.
Source: booklet printed for the event
Poets should learn from Jesus,
learn candor. An unflappable calm.
How to distill the fruits of reflection.
How to bear poverty as if it were wealth.
They could learn about the force field
how it alters people:
they don’t think of themselves first.
If poets would dress in white,
buy a holy bleach for their poems,
rinse out confusion, flatness, hypocrisy,
then the people may flock to the paper to touch it.
And, in turn, be touched by it.
Let all poems be white-
Coated with the coconut nectar of truth.
Paul Sohar gave a
speech on Personal Reminiscences about Nick Kolumban.
I’d like to remember Nick as a friend and my mentor in many
respects. And I would like to remember him as I knew him, the
gregarious fellow that he was; yes, perhaps, the last true
bohemian spirit, the embodiment of the romantic idea of a poet.
- Paul Sohar’s dedicated poem to Miklos is entitled: What
Is the Answer?
Paul Sohar: Nick
could be serious about his work and responsible as a family man,
but he always found enough room in his life for little jollity.
He knew how to enjoy life, parties, witty conversations and good
Kolumban, the daughter of the poet, read his father’s poem:
In search of Perfectness
read her poem dedicated to Miklos Kolumban:
Anna Kolumban (wife of Miklos), Nicole Kolumban and Paul Sohar
in the break
friends remembering a New Year’s Eve spent with Nicholas
Kolumban’s poem New York read in Hungarian by Gyongyver Harko
one of Nicholas’s best friends, tasting the words in Tea
Sun and tea, these giant aids of survival!
Dutcher, reading one of his favorite Kolumban poems
WHAT I TOOK FROM
I used America as a
possibly meant for someone else.
I grabbed ten years of college
that could have easily served two.
I seized huge chunks of idealism
and converted it into irony.
I took advice, made some money
but later dismissed them both.
I fashioned myself into a sovereign
in this country of opinion followers.
I became home-bound, a letter fancier
in a nation of professional migrants.
Of postcard dispatchers. I hid inside a Yankee coat
although naked I remained a Hungarian.
I also absorbed much English,
weaving from it a curious cloth.