Celebration of World Poetry Day at UNESCOOn the occasion of World Poetry Day, celebrated on March 21, UNESCO will pay tribute to Hungarian poet Attila Jozsef (1905-1937). The Day will also be marked by the proclamation of the laureate of the Golden Crown of the Struga Poetry Evenings1, American poet William Stanley Merwin. The name of the laureate of the Bridges of Struga prize will also be announced during the ceremony (7 p.m. Room XI).
Attila Jozsef published numerous collections of poetry and is considered to be one of Hungary’s greatest poets. The Hungarian-born writer and journalist Francois Fejto, who was a close friend of the poet, will pay tribute to Attila Jozsef and give a reading of his verse. An exhibition on Attila Jozsef’s life and work will be on show at UNESCO from March 30 to April 7 (Salle des Pas Perdus).
The laureate of the Struga Poetry Evenings, William Stanley Merwin, born in New York in 1927, is the author of some 15 poetry collections and more than 20 translations including Dante’s Purgatory. He won the Yale Series of Younger Poets prize for his first book A Mask for Janus (1952). Established in 1919, the Prize is the oldest annual poetry distinction in the U.S.A. It rewards the most promising young American poets. His work has earned him numerous other distinctions including the Pulitzer Prize (1970) and the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize (1998). Merwin’s French translator, Luc de Goustine, will give a reading of his poetry during the ceremony.
The laureate of the second edition of the Bridges of Struga Prize will also be proclaimed during the ceremony. The prize was created in 2003 by the Struga Poetry Evenings in cooperation with UNESCO to recompense young poets from all over the world.
The evening will close with a poetry recital “Chants mêlés contre l’exclusion” (intertwined songs against exclusion) by Benjamin Jules-Rosette, who works with an African network of education through theatre.
1. Among the laureates of the Struga Poetry Evenings, an international festival of poetry organized since 1961 in The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, are: Rafael Alberti (Spain), Yehuda Amichaï (Israel), W.H. Auden (U.K./U.S.A.), Pablo Neruda (Chile), Makoto Ooka (Japan), Léopold Sédar Senghor (Sénégal), Andreï Voznesenski (Russian Federation) and numerous great poets of the modern era.