CULTURAL LIFE AT JADRAN
Committee and Members of Jadran Club were always very proud of Slovenian cultural heritage.
There were many cultural programs, dedicated to Mothers, Fathers, Slovenian writers and poets.
A beautiful monument was erected to the well know Slovenian poet Oton Župančič.
His poems were learned at school by children and recited at the cultural programs.
All members are very proud Slovenians.
Click on link to View Oton Župančič Memorial Collection in Ljubljana.
DUMA by Oton Župančič (selected verses only, translated by Henry R. Cooper, Jr.)
DUMA I have heard a song and I have heard a voice singing,
The voice of a man, as if the answer to a woman ‘s voice;
I have heard my heart ringing.
The song of the man and the answer to the woman’s song:
You are amidst the fields and you sing me a song entirely green,
A song of the wind and the branches and the grass and the sun on the grass,
A song of the hastening and a song of the standing waves,
A song of the silver and a song of the golden waves
A song of the brooks and a song of the grain.
One of the longest and finest of the works of Oton Zupancic (1878-1949), perhaps Slovenia’s greatest twentieth-century poet, is the poem he entitled with the Ukrainian word duma, roughly ‘thought’, ‘meditation’ or ‘revery’. I Written sometime between 1903 and 1907, it was included in the volume Samogovori (‘Monologues’) which he published in 1908; it is regularly anthologized in Slovene-language and translated collections of Slovene literature, and remains popular to the present day. 2 In my opinion, the poem makes clear references, especially in its first half, to the work of Walt Whitman (1819-92), and most particularly his ‘Salut au monde’, one of the larger items in Whitman’s chief poetic work, Leaves of Grass, whose last definitive edition authorized by Whitman was published in v 1891-92. Zupancic imitated Whitman in his poem in order to contrast the American’s cosmopolitanism (a sentiment the Slovene himself was not without) to his own fears concerning the deracination of Slovenes living abroad, and the consequent dangers to Slovene culture and the national identity. While the first half of ‘Duma’ (through verse 92) clearly celebrates the world and its achievements, the second half sings a far more lugubrious song. In the compelling image at the end of the poem, of the oyster slowly extruding its pearl as the result of constant pain, we are invited to see the poet himself meditating aloud and poetically on the fate of his land.
“The villages here are bound by roads as if by ribbons; The church has raised its head above the roofs,
From above it observes the toil of the people beneath, It measures their hours and divides their labor.
The houses are tiny, the windows so small, the carnations from the windows Pour green along the wall, red foams This quiet waterfall in the sun – A signal to the boys who walk past during the day, A secret signal for the night – ” So you sing; and your eyes are glad at the patterned kerchiefs, The healthy, sunburned cheeks and the pearl-white laughter, The angular motions and the awkward gait and the peasants’ straits; Coarse oaths are wine to your ear, The strong simile-you would pay good money for it. You are amidst the fields and you sing me a song entirely green, You sing and invite: “The oak giants stand beyond the field and fight with the wind, The dreams of the ages rock their crowns to a distant roaring, Each spring novelty pays heed to the secrets of the past; You struggle abroad and suffocate your soul – While [ am with roses a rose: I mix among them – You could walk by and not distinguish me from my friends.” You are amidst the fields and you sing me a song entirely green.
Oton Župančič is a famous childrens’ poet. Poem Ciciban in čebela (Young school boy and the Bee)
Collection of Childrens Poem Mehurčki (The Bubbles)