Book advice from Kostya Moskalets
A story about favorite books by Kostya Moskalets, a writer, author of wonderful songs and just a bright man.
Hermann Hesse “The Bead Game”, 1978
I have re-read this book throughout my life countless times, every time I find advice, solace, and answer to questions that are particularly painful for the moment. Today it is as relevant as in 1943, when it first appeared in print. First of all, because of criticism of the so-called “feuilleton age”. All the controversy that Hesse made non-spiritual, superficial and primitive “feuilleton age” of the 20-30’s of the twentieth century, are more and more related to us, the inhabitants of the “Internet day”. Recipes for the crisis, proposed by Hesse, remain valid until today.
Bogdan Matiyash “Conversations with God”, 2007
When I first read this book of deep sacramental poetry, I did not believe my eyes, so radically different from the texts of contemporary Ukrainian literature, in spite of the popularity of cheap cynicism, dirty classe vocabulary, mediocre shyness, and manic selfishness. It was difficult to believe that the author of such poems, similar to the best pages of the mystical works of Teresa Avila, Catherine Sienna or “Conversations of the soul with God” of St. Augustine, lives and works alongside us, writing in refined, refined tongue about the cleanest things in the world. These are extremely trusting and frank conversations about the most holy things – with the Most Holy. The endless poetic books that came out in the world of just 10 years ago, today, no one except literary critics remembers. Instead, “Conversations with God”, which nobody intended to touch and annoy, became more and more necessary for the soul, as the daily bread of a really good and really important letter.
Mykola Zerov “Works in two volumes”, 1990
Thanks to this two-volume I myself began to write sonnets and literary-critical articles. Often I return to him, I re-read, I find something new something I have not noticed before. This year, for example, I noticed how deeply believing Christian was Mykola Zerov; This is evidenced by numerous images and allusions, frank and hidden citations.
Thomas Sterns Elliot Selected, 1990
This was the first (and, in principle, the only one) more or less comprehensive volume of the outstanding poet in translations into Ukrainian. The most beloved ones are the poems “Greater Greater Wednesday” and “Four Quartets”. It may happen that this is generally the best of all that Eliot wrote, if not to count his literary-critical works.
Ernst Hunter “Seventy is over.” 2011
To the greatest regret and the shame, the Ukrainian translation of the wonderfully beautiful, wise and observing diaries belonging to the undisputed classics of this genre, is still not. Between them, their author is one of the greatest German writers of the twentieth century, whose life in itself is like an entertaining adventure novel, moreover, not one. So, you have to be content with Russian or Polish translations so far – well, and learn German, of course.
- 24 May