Letter to Jiří Orten (1939)

Dear Jiří,
As I am writing you this letter in the Academic Café, your cousin is sitting at a nearby table (it’s a small world), unless I’m confusing her with someone else. If my letter will seem a little confusing, chalk it up to the recurring fashion of short skirts and her legs, which I can’t stop looking at as if I were – how shall I put it poetically – a somnambulant.
Since I am quite clueless about the anthology, I will accede to your method of “pronouncing names”. But at least let me mention some of my doubts: You wrote that the anthology will contain – if I am quoting you properly since I don’t have your letter at hand – those who somehow feel like friends, those who “hang out with us” or something like that. Surely you didn’t formulate that correctly, for I don’t feel anything like that when I utter the name Kriebel.
It has a beautiful, rainy scent to it and – most importantly – it’s just good. But what is the essential difference between Kriebel and Ivan Jelínek in relation to us? If I said a thousand times these two names one after the other, I wouldn’t be able to guess why Kriebel seems close to you and Jelínek remote”. But since I would like to justify your choice, I’d simply say that Jelínek is weaker. So, there is only a difference in quality. (A substantially different matter than with Taufr, Čivrný, etc., which I successfully “pronounced”). And one other problem: If we exclude, Jelínek because he is simply weaker in poetry (I can’t see another reason), the question arises why we would include Weigner, who has yet to write better poems. (We don’t have to tell Franta that. Perhaps it is sentimental and overly friendly of me, but I don’t like to cause anyone such pain.) – I had the same difficultly pronouncing the name Mikulášek. He is weaker than Kriebel, and does not, in my view, have any advantages over
Urbánková, whose poems about children have, in my dull and possibly erroneous opinion, the charm - sit venia verbo – of Jilek’s style, and he has nothing on Konečný, either.
These are my sole doubts, otherwise I agree (not including Klum… illegible) with everything.
Best wishes,
Brno, 6 Oct. 39

Subject: In the network
Author: Blatný, Ivan
Title: Letter to Jiří Orten (1939)
Licence: Free license

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