Baltics, my only truly long poem, emerged during the early 1970s. I had long yearned to reach further, to write something that was steered by spontaneous associations within a broad framework. I looked for a theme that allowed this and which encouraged excursions and diverse perspectives. That the theme was the Baltic Sea is really quite natural given my biography. My grandparents became central to me after my mother's illness and death in the late 60's. A trip to Estonia and Latvia in 1970 is also an important background to the poem. A key word in the poem is the 'boundary'. The Baltic Sea was then a much more unforgiving boundary than now. But the Baltic Sea is also a passage communication. 'Libau' in Section I is the same city as 'Liepãja' in Section IV. The poem is a geographical, historical, political and introspective. It contains authentic material. What sounds documentary in it is really documentary. What holds it all together is my personal voice, my tone of voice.
It's a poem that lacks nothing.
15 December 2015 (Sweden)
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