Stanisław Pestka (in english)

Stanisław Pestka

(Jón Zbrzëca)


translated by Sabina Szymikowska

Stanisław Pestka was born in Rolbik, near Chojnice. He attended a secondary school in Kościerzyna, which he finished in 1950. Then, from 1950 to 1953 he studied Polish language and literature at the University of Poznań. After graduating Pestka worked as a secondary school teacher in Lidzbark Warmiński and Slawno. At the same time, he wote articles for many magazines. From 1958 to 1961 he was a co-editor of Kaszëbë and after it closed down, Pestka moved to Bydgoszcz, where he worked for Ilustrowany Kurier Polski (The Illustrated Polish Daily) as an executive editor of the cultural section. In 1965, Pestka moved to Szczecin, where he worked for the Polish Radio. After two years, he moved back to Bydgoszcz and worked for Fakty i Myśli (Facts and Thoughts), a magazine for young people. In 1968 he was became the executive editor of the cultural section in Litery (The Letters). After this magazine was closed down, Pestka moved to Czas (The Time). In 1969 he started work in Pomerania where in 1969 -1979 and 1990-1994 he held the post of an editor-in-chief.

Pestka’s works were influenced by Jan Karnowski. His language is difficult, sophisticated and full of aphorisms, archaisms and neologisms. His metaphors are considered to be quite daring.

In his works he combines Kashubian motifs with the universal Mediterranean traditions. Pestka made his debut in Pomerania in 1969. His first collection of poems, Pòłudnica, published in 1976 was hailed by Jan Drzeżdżon as the greatest event in the Kashubian literature since the times of Derdowski and Heyke. Pestka’s poems were also collected in Wizrë ë duchë (1986) and Wieczórny widnik (2002). Some of his poems can be found in the anthologies Piaśnica (1971), Modra struna (1973) and Westrzód dôczi (1977). His two books Piórem i szablą (1961) and Emisariusz niepodległości (1972), about Józef Wybicki were written in Polish.

Pestka wrote his articles under the pseudonym Krëban z Milachòwa, and poetry under the pen name Jan Zbrzyca.

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