Alfonsas Nyka-Niliūnas

Alfonsas Nyka-Niliūnas is a poet, essayist, translator and critic. Born 1919 in Nemeikštis village, Utena district, Lithuania. In 1938-1939 he studied philosophy and romantic languages at Vytautas Magnus University (VMU) and continued the same studies at Vilnius University (VU). During WWII he fled to the West. In Tübingen and Freiburg he studied philosophy, art history, German, French and English literature. In 1949 he migrated to the United States and worked in the Library of Congress in Washington. His poetry debut was in 1939. Seven other collections of poetry followed as well as numerous essays and articles including three volumes of Diary fragments. He translated Virgil, Baudelaire, Rimbaud, Claudel, Michaux St George, Goethe, T.S. Eliot, C. Milosz, S. Leopardi and Shakespeare's Hamlet into Lithuanian. Nyka-Niliūnas has won a series of awards including the Lithuanian National Prize 1997.

Three Translations of Alfonsas Nyka-Niliūnas

Photograph from VDU Tenebrae When you arose from Tenebrae, And first opened your eyes You lay in Eden On the river shores of Hiddekel, Looking at your naked body, That had become word, the word I had to tell you. …

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