SELECTED POEMS
Zbigniew Herbert Published by: The Ecco Press, 2000 Strony / Pages: 128, soft cover ISBN: 0-88001-099-1
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When you read the poems of Zbigniew Herbert, you are reading history, for Herbert's poems are steeped in his view of politics and society of Poland and Eastern Europe.
The dark humor and the irony we see throughout Herbert's Selected Poems are a common thread among poets of Eastern Europe. There is a bleakness and cynicism at the soul of many of these poets.

There is a sense that "the common man" had no control over his destiny. Decisions are made by the elite. The following lines from "Nike Who Hesitates" contemplates the inevitability of war by conjecturing on the thoughts of a statue of the goddess of victory:

Nike would terribly like
to go up
and kiss him on the forehead


but she is afraid
that he who has never known
the sweetness of caresses
having tasted it
might run off like the others
during the battle


Thus Nike hesitates
and at last decides
to remain in the position
which sculptors taught her


Inanimate objects recur as omnipresences, giving witness to the harshness of the world. In "The Hair," Herbert writes of not a fly on the wall, but hair growing from a wall:

gnashing of teeth
sudden scream
tearing with fingers
are not sufficient to frighten them

Inanimate objects are revered for their constancy by Herbert, whose prose poem "Objects" more than hints at the ways we cling to stability when our world is in flux and we are betrayed by people we trusted:

And tables, even when they are tired, will not dare to bend their knees. I suspect that objects do this from pedagogical considerations, to reprove us constantly for our instability.

Herbert's poems deserve multiple readings, for their nuances are missed upon a first read. You will never look at your wristwatch the same way again
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Inne tytuly / Other titles
Wiersze wybrane+ CD Zbigniew Herbert Zbigniew Herbert Strony / Pages: 350, twarda oprawa ISBN: 978-83-65614-07-0
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The Collected Prose 1948-1998 Zbigniew Herbert Published by: Ecco, 2010 Strony / Pages: 736, hard cover ISBN: 978-0-06-072382-8
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Pan Cogito szuka rady / Mr Cogito Seeks Advice Zbigniew Herbert ;a5, 2017 Strony / Pages: 136, twarda oprawa ISBN: 9788365614001
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Utwory rozproszone ( Rekonesans) Zbigniew Herbert WYDAWNICTWO A5, 2011 Strony / Pages: 496, twarda oprawa ISBN: 978-83-61298-12-0
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DRAMATY Zbigniew Herbert Biblioteka Więzi, 2009 Strony / Pages: 284, miękka oprawa ISBN: 978-83-60356-51-7
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BAJKI Zbigniew Herbert a5, 2009 Strony / Pages: 96, miękka oprawa ISBN: 978-83-61298-06-9
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ZNAKI NA PAPIEZE Zbigniew Herbert Bosz, 2008 Strony / Pages: 180, twarda oprawa ISBN: 978-83-7576-012-5
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89 WIERSZY Zbigniew Herbert a5, 2015 Strony / Pages: 184.miekka oprawa ISBN: 978-83-61298-03-8
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BARBARIAN IN THE GARDEN Zbigniew Herbert A HARVEST BOOK, HARCOURT BRACE & CO Strony / Pages: 180, soft cover ISBN: 0-15-610681-7
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