English

Serbian Poet Stefan Stanojević

By: Azad Karimi

I cannot say that I’m professional autor yet. Maybe I will never be. I don’t know. I’m still learning, doing research of regional and world literature scene and trying to answer my neverending questions from within.

 

 

Interview

Serbian Poet Stefan Stanojević

By Azad Karimi

 

 

All I do is digging inside myself or the history of places I (never) visited. Guardian of the lost art of understanding and listening.

 

Stefan said very well that understanding and listening is an art that will be forgotten if we do not guard it.

This young poet from Belgrade speak of his ideals, aspirations, and goals with strong logic and glorious words.

 

As a writer and poet from Kurdistan, I am proud of him. I am exactly twenty years older than him and when he was born I was a second-semester student at Sanandaj University. I am happy that Serbia and the world have a child named Stefan Stanojević.

 

He has a great spirit, is polite, kind, and sincere, and is diligent and serious in his work.

 

I must say that the literature of a nation is a spiritual identity and reflects the social etiquette of that nation. Poetry is one of the glorious manifestations of literature.

Meaningful speech and expression that is manifested in written poetry and folklore literature show the vision, culture, and antiquity of a nation.

 

That is why totalitarian and racist systems such as Turkish Kemalism, Iranian Pan-Farsism, and Nasserist Arab chauvinists in Syria and Iraq have become hostile to the Kurdish language and have banned it in schools (Iran, Turkey, and Syria). Turkey banned the Kurdish language even in the streets and markets. Iran, Turkey, Iraq, and Syria forced the people of Kurdistan to emigrate extensively. They are trying to destroy and forget this ancient language.

 

I would like to invite people to read the text of the interview. Stephen's words are interesting. In the end, he dedicated a few poems to respected readers around the world, and I urge all those who are interested in poetry to translate and publish the poems of this creative Serbian poet in their own languages to exchange culture and encourage Stefan and other poets in across the world so that real writers can think more and try harder and serve literature more by writing pure and excellent poems.

I wish success and happiness to my dear friend Stefan.

 

 

Thank you!

Vestland-Norway

 

                                                      …………………………………………

 

1- please present yourself ( Name, education,job, Civil status and...)

.Stefan Stanojević (1995) (srb. Стефан Станојевић, Pančevo, Federal Republic of Yugoslavia). Student of Serbian literature and language at the Faculty of Philology in Belgrade. Published on several internet portals, in online and physical editions of many regional magazines, in collections. Since 2015, he has held over thirty evenings of poetry and thus returned frequent readings of poetry in his city. Since January 2018, he has been editing the only Pancevo literary series "Punchtown poetry". He published books of poetry "Mladi Atlas” (Young Atlas) (BKG, 2016) and "Napad Panike” (Panic attack) (Edicija Najbolja, 2020). He worked as a journalist, manual worker, substitute professor, warehouseman. He is a member of the Association of Writers and Literary Translators of Pancevo.

 

2-what is your cultural specialize?

. I believe it’s avoiding unnecessary conflicts and unpleasant surprises. Also, I specialized in the silent and objective observation of surroundings, people, their reactions, actions, etc. I write mostly about the absence of common sense, tenderness, misunderstanding of love and emotions but also nostalgic daydreaming of all the things that are lost. Sometimes I can’t say if I’m a poet or an archeologist. All I do is digging inside myself or the history of places I (never) visited. Guardian of the lost art of understanding and listening. I don’t want to draw attention to myself necessarily just by provocation.

 

3- When and how did you become interested in this field of culture?

.It was at the end of highschool. High school of electrical engineering didn’t have much to do with art, right, so I had a need for sometning liberating. Until that moment it was basketball, but reading or writing had some sort of intimacy I was looking for.

 

4- Who was your motivator?

.The writers I read. John Fante especially.

 

5- What was your parent's reaction?

.I come from the working class family. Any form of art is classified as waste of time, and if time is money... you get it.After years of misunderstanding and trying to prove them wrong or expecting of them to accept me as who I am, we’re finally at peace. But they needed to see that people or foreign translators or national radio are interested in my work. I’m fine with that. Probably I would do the same as a parent. I would not like to see my child do things that do not benefit him economically, mentally, emotionally and scientifically. They were my full support for everything else my whole life.

 

6- when started you such as a professional Author?

.I cannot say that I’m professional autor yet. Maybe I will never be. I don’t know. I’m still learning, doing research of regional and world literature scene and trying to answer my neverending questions from within.

 

7- Are you thankful and happy because of your activities as an Author- Writer?

.I hate when a person says ”I regret nothing”, Jesus Christ, man, are you okay? How can you be so arrogant and with so much lack of self-criticism... Of course I sometimes regret everything, especially my activities as an author. Maybe everything would been different for me. It’s funny, you know, because Serbia is in Europe, but it seems just geographically. Art here is underestimated, dangerous and unprofitable. Things I’m thankful and happy for is family, friends, empathy, sensibility and senses. I value manners, honesty.

If you want to present something innovative here, you are usually characterized as someone with pro-European ideas or a fake cosmopolitan. The public is closed and distrustful of European ideas because they bombed us in 1999 and now they see us as cheap labor.I try not to pick a side in that madness. I think of myself as an enlightened patriot who will not hesitate to criticize in his writing all the factors of his environment.

 

8- How you see the view ,the future of literature, culture? You are an writer, you should have a opinion...

.It depends. Maybe they will throw stones at me for thinking like this but writers write less and less about topics that interest them and more often about topics that interest a certain social group.It ceases to be a literature that is ready to take a neutral point and criticizes all the negative and wrong aspects of society and is increasingly becoming a simple activism that demands attention and popularity.All these trends about freedom of speech, opinion and democracy and then they censor everyone with an opinion opposite to theirs, the whole next level with that ”cancel culture”, writing petitions ... It is pathetic how contradictory it is.It is unnatural for us all to have the same attitudes and feelings, and especially for them to be colorful and positive.I found solace in literature. These were sentences of depressed, lonely, alienated and defeated people. But they managed to awaken in me the will to live. I want to see this in literature, as in life - as many different emotions and perspectives as possible, we should never be limited to a few of them just because a dictatorial group likes it.

 

9- Can you become one part of the cultural movement for motivation in youth or new generation in your country and so than?

.I will never create any movement. When someone founds a movement for a higher goal, the followers stop seeing the goal but only see the founder of the movement. Also, I will never become part of any movement because it would nullify me as an individual.That is exactly what needs to be done - to save individuals.

 

10- How can you help our world become a better place for living?

.This can be achieved by parents, teachers and professors, lecturers, publishers. We have the power to change generations to learn from our mistakes.

The poetry series that I started as the only one in my city, represents the voices of young, non-established authors. I just talk to them and try to adjust the situation so that they are not uncomfortable and feel safe. Whenever I get a call from some high school I am thrilled to meet all these young people. They are characterized as lazy, disinterested, wild, impossible to cooperate - that is what professors who should not be in education think about them. I like to imagine them as smart, resourceful, informed future great people and treat them as such. It’s amazing how things work more easily when we treat each other like human beings.It is over with revolutions like mass demonstrations, protests and riots. The revolution of our time will happen to brave individuals. Love, sacrifice, empathy, philanthropy are revolutionary acts when everything is digital and plastic.Individuals who do not want chaos, blood and violence, but love, peace and harmony will change the world. If they are not allowed to do so, they will hide until the world disappears.

 

11- Have you more word to say or suggestion for our readers?

.I would like to share couple of poems I wrote (translated from Serbian by Djordje Zecevic):

 

1-

THE DAY STARTED MEANINGLESS

 

I’m awoken by rain

which aggressively dropped onto window sill.

Once again, despair fills my body

it crawled under my skin

under my nails

into my wrinkles on my face.

It’s in my parquet

which squeals underneath me

in stairs

in a mailbox.

From the inside, loneliness

strengthens a noose around my neck.

Weather and rain

remind me of a curse

my hollow shoe soles

my worn-out coats

indigence,

biting like a mad dog.

And just like a dog

like a wounded animal

I lick my wounds.

Those on my heart,

I cannot reach.

 

2-

 

REVOLUTION

 

In our living room, sitting on a carpet

During 5th October 2000, my father and I

played with Lego

television

yelled all sorts of political names.

The phone rang

my father answered

not in a million years

he said into the speaker

I have better business for myself

my son and I are playing.

I asked who called

revolution, son.

I looked at him cluelessly

then I look at the television

what are they doing, dad?

Nothing, son.

And he was right.

 

3-

 

I KNOW A GUY

 

Mother claimed

that he didn’t want to be on this world.

The labor parturition made her struggle

like never before.

Fed by the love itself

he’s been hopelessly

giving it and wanting it.

He’d interfere with teacher’s job

He didn’t want to sleep

and to other kids

he told stories of his own.

They all listened

nobody was sleeping anymore.

He would be the best speaker at the park

so good, the homeless would be ignored.

Sweet-spoken liar and a manipulator.

He’d acknowledge empathy

like his only talent.

When people were in mind:

eat little, drink a lot

and talk intimately.

Sometimes, he’d dodge

a girl’s look

he listens carefully

often offers something sweet, food or a word

and he hopes to evade heartbreak.

He resents me

everybody else is more important than him.

He tries to forget

but at the night, I talk about everything

why he didn’t say or do something

he blames me for his failures.

I see it in his eyes

when they meet

in some of four

big mirrors.

 

Stefan Stanojevic

 

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