Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Save the Date: Baratynsky Day

March 3 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

We invite you to participate this year by choosing “an elegy” to share.
For many of us, 2023 was a year of great loss, with much to mourn. For some of us, 2024 has shown us glimmers of recovery; for others, the miseries are interminable. This situation invites us to gather and to share elegies–to mourn, to remember, to release, to make room for tomorrow.
We aim to include many readers, so please keep your choice to 5 minutes. If you have chosen a longer poem, please select one section or a few stanzas to share only.
You may choose a poem by Baratynsky, or it could be your favorite elegy by another poet. Poetry from all languages and cultures are welcome in this international poetry celebration.
Signup to read by 11:59pm on Feb 29 to be listed in the program.
DRESS WARM: This reading will take place in the Garage of Wordship II, which is the home and studio of Richard Kostelanetz. The doors will be open. Dress warmly as if you were attending an outdoor event.
Baratynsky Day is a salon, where the audience is free to come and go. We will have only a few seats. Most should expect to stand, as if you were at a concert at a bar.
REFRESHMENTS: There will be plentiful hot tea to warm you within, as well as some biscuits to dip in your tea. That is the guaranteed minimum of hospitality. There will likely be more.
TIMING: The end time for the reading will be confirmed on March 1st.
Yevgeny Abramovich Baratynsky (Евге́ний Абра́мович Бараты́нский) was born either on March 2nd or February 19th [depending on your geopolitical inclinations] in the year 1800. He was lauded by Alexander Pushkin as the finest Russian elegiac poet. After a long period of neglect, Baratynsky was taken up by Russian Modernist poets who considered him a supreme poet of thought. This “most daring and dark of the nineteenth-century poets,” as Michael Wachtel has called him, inspired Anna Akhmatova and Osip Mandelstam, and later, according the Nobel laureate himself, forced a young Joseph Brodsky “to get more seriously into writing.”
At the suggestion of Anton Pascuill, a patron of St. Rocco’s Readings for the Dispossessed, St. Rocco’s and friends have gathered in Albany around Baratynsky’s birthday to drink tea, eat sushki, and share favorite Russian poems, old and new, read aloud. When the pandemic made this annual event impossible, the curators of St. Rocco’s Readings for the Dispossessed teamed up with Ugly Duckling Presse and the University at Albany to launch an online celebration of Russian Poetry—BARATYNSKY DAY—featuring poets and translators from around the world. This year will be our first celebration of the day since 2022. It will be a modest affair, for readers in the present and writers in the past to commune.
My gift is meager and my voice not loud
but I’m alive, and my existence is
beloved to somebody on the earth:
my descendant will find it years from now
in my poems. Who knows? His soul and mine
may prove to be in intimate relation,
and as I found a friend in my generation
a reader in posterity I’ll find.
Мой дар убог, и голос мой не громок,
Но я живу, и на земли мое
Кому-нибудь любезно бытие:
Его найдет далекий мой потомок
В моих стихах; как знать? душа моя
Окажется с душой его в сношенье,
И как нашел я друга в поколенье,
Читателя найду в потомстве я.
– Евгений Баратынский, translated by Rawley Grau


March 3
4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Event Category:
Event Tags:


St. Rocco’s


1051 Wyckoff Ave
Ridgewood, NY 11385 United States
+ Google Map