"The poems are the work of a profoundly serious temperament and a professional translator of world into word"– Michael Salcman, Judge, Harriss Poetry Prize
This beautiful bilingual book comprises 41 poems translated into English by Danuta E. Kosk-Kosicka (also the book’s editor) and three short stories, as well as seven full-page color photographs. Original Polish-language versions face their English translations. The book comprises four chapters. The first three contain 12-13 poems each. Chapter IV consists of storytelling pieces, three poems paired with three short stories, harkening back to the oral tradition of times past, going hand in hand with the author s participation in the Polish Storytellers’ Association. Printed on heavy white paper, the book has handsome lacquered covers with bookmark flaps. Sweet Water, Salt Water has been translated into Japanese by Hiroko Tsuji and Izumi Nakamura, and published by Kokubunsha Ltd., Tokyo, Japan in December 2016.
Publisher: Astra, Łódź, Poland; First edition (July 18, 2009)
“The author travels often, underscoring for both herself and her fans that our lives are journeys that inform and shape us. Further reaffirming this fact are the names of locations, along with dates, printed under each poem. Lidia Kosk’s peregrinations encompass both places from her childhood in eastern Poland and progressively more distant locations (Warsaw, Krakow, the Tatra Mountains, Paris, Baltimore, New York, California). It is worth noting that many of Lidia Kosk’s poems and unique photographs of nature featured in her latest tome were inspired by meetings with American readers of Niedosyt / Reshapings. […] She describes various states of consciousness in a poem aptly titled Consciousness. It is in our thoughts that we exist most vividly, most deeply. They pose the most important question: Why? which is at the root of human doubts, contemplating the sense of life, the pain of existence. […] Six works (including three short stories) that make up the fourth part of the book are an illustration of the wise art of storytelling, masterfully brought to life by Lidia Kosk. A particularly meaningful proof of that is the short story Lily, a genuine fairy tale.” –Paweł Kuszczyński, AKANT (original in Polish)
The most remarkable attribute of Lidia Kosk’ s new book of poetry Słodka Woda, Słona Woda / Sweet Water, Salt Water is the beauty of the poetry. […] Lidia Kosk’s work has an elemental beauty that is more akin to nature and inspiration than learned artifice. Now that is not to say that she isn’t an accomplished poet, because she is, but to emphasize that her poetry grows out of her heart, not imposed by detached intellect. She is a poet from a country not self-indulgent and pseudo-sophisticated. Her country, Poland, her generation, experienced World War II, Nazi occupation and then the dull grey tyranny of the Communists. Negative emotions like grief color her vision but everything in her poetry points the way out of any such suffocation […] Danuta E. Kosk-Kosicka, a poet herself, translated the Polish poetry into English. The translation is more than competent; it is first rate poetry… –Dan Cuddy, Loch Raven Review
The poetry of Lidia Kosk is filled with masked messages. For in sentences seemingly clear, simple, and obvious I see a deeper current, hidden underneath the surface of words, knowingly submerged by the author amongst details, paraphernalia, facts, everyday events. […] The author discreetly introduces us to the world of myths, legends, and stories, not naming them outright, but rather concealing them beneath the surface of water, against a background of trees or the lightness or darkness of horizons. She herself, like the Lady of the Lake from Arthurian legend, unveils the beauty and vastness of our everyday lives, sunrises and sunsets in the streets of Warsaw, achievements and small defeats that confront us constantly. […] The poem I See You explains a lot, reveals reasons for the passion for the fight for a better human, the other, our kin… –Andrzej Zaniewski, Gazeta Kulturalna (original in Polish)