Poet, son of the writer Lev Blatný (1894-1930). Born in Brno, he spent the first part of his life here – before escaping into exile in 1948. He lived in a house...
Poet, translator and publicist, Brno born, spent his childhood and youth here. He learned the bookseller’s trade from A. Píša and for a brief period (1919–1921)...
Poet and publicist. Lived in Brno from 1937 until his death, latterly at Mášova street. He is linked to several cultural institutions (the Brno studios of Czechoslovak...
Poet, publicist, memoirist. The first – and so far the only Czech to receive the Nobel prize for Literature. In addition to the lasting popularity he won through...
Poet, writer, editor and translator. Spent most of his life in Brno and is closely linked to a number of Brno cultural institutions (the magazine Host do domu...
Poet and schoolteacher. His connection to Brno dates back to his university days. Apart from one interlude, he has been living to this day at Poděbradova street....
Kamenný vrch (Stone Hill) Kohoutovice Kohoutovice (Hotel Myslivna) Koliště (Koliště Street) Komárov Komín Komín, Hlavní (Main street, the Dvořáks’ ) Královo Pole, Palackého třída (Palacký Street) Kraví hora - hvězdárna (observatory) Kraví hora (Cow Hill) Křenová (Křenová Street) Křížová (Křížová Street)
Slovanské náměstí (Slavonic Square) Soběšice St James Square (Churche of St James) St. Anne’s Hospital Stará radnice - Brněnský drak (Old Town Hall - Brno Dragon) Starobrněnská (Starobrněnská Street) Svitava river Svratka river
1901 – 1986
Poet, publicist, memoirist. The first – and so far the only Czech to receive the Nobel prize for Literature. In addition to the lasting popularity he won through his verse, often admired by readers who have no great affinity to poetry, Jaroslav Seifert earned respect as a public figure, willing to speak out and take action at times of great national strife, e.g. while heading the Svaz spisovatelů (‘Writers Guild’) after the Soviet occupation in 1968 or as signatory of Charter 77. While being as a poet closely linked to Prague, he reminisced throughout his life about his short sojourn in Brno in the 1920s, working as an editor in the Rovnost (‘Equality’) daily and making friends with Jiří Mahen and his poetic contemporaries, as we can read in “Věř, za nic bychom nestáli” (‘Trust, we would not be worth a thing’) and “Na juliánovských lukách...” (‘In the Julian fields’).
We used to lie in the Julian Fields sometimes,
in the evening,
while the city disappeared in darkness
and in the backwaters of a nearby river,
frogs started crying.
Once a young gypsy came and sat with us.
Her blouse was only half-buttoned
and she could tell your fortune by looking at your hand.
She told Halas:
You won’t live to see fifty.
She told Artus Cernik:
You won’t live much after that.
I didn’t want my fortune told.
I was afraid.
But she grabbed my hand anyway
and rasped in an angry voice:
You’ll live a long time!
That was her revenge.
And my curse.
translated by Lyn Coffin
Seifert, Jaroslav: Morový sloup -The Plague Monument, Washington: SVU Press, 1980, p. 29.