Pavol Janik - painted portrait


Translated into English by Heather Trebaticka, nee King

Mgr. art. Pavol Janik, PhD., (magister artis et philosophiae doctor) was born in 1956 in Bratislava, where he also studied film and television dramaturgy and scriptwriting at the Drama Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts (VSMU). He has worked at the Ministry of Culture (1983–1987), in the media and in advertising. President of the Slovak Writers’ Society (2003–2007), Secretary-General of the SWS (1998–2003, 2007–2013), Editor-in-Chief of the literary weekly of the SWS Literarny tyzdennik (2010–2013). Honorary Member of the Union of Czech Writers (from 2000), Member of the Editorial Board of the weekly of the UCW Obrys-Kmen (2004–2014), Member of the Editorial Board of the weekly of the UCW Literatura – Umeni – Kultura (from 2014). Member of the Writers Club International (from 2004). Member of the Poetas del Mundo (from 2015). Member of the World Poets Society (from 2016). Director of the Writers Capital International Foundation for Slovakia and the Czech Republic (2016–2017). Chief Representative of the World Nation Writers’ Union in Slovakia (from 2016). Ambassador of the Worldwide Peace Organization (Organizacion Para la Paz Mundial) in Slovakia (from 2018). Member of the Board of the International Writers Association (IWA BOGDANI) (from 2019). He has received a number of awards for his literary and advertising work both in his own country and abroad.

This virtuoso of Slovak literature, Pavol Janik, is a poet, dramatist, prose writer, translator, publicist and copywriter. His literary activities focus mainly on poetry. Even his first book of poems Unconfirmed Reports (1981) attracted the attention of the leading authorities in Slovak literary circles. He presented himself as a plain-spoken poet with a spontaneous manner of poetic expression and an inclination for irony directed not only at others, but also at himself. This style has become typical of all his work, which in spite of its critical character has also acquired a humorous, even bizarre dimension. His manner of expression is becoming terse to the point of being aphoristic. It is thus perfectly natural that Pavol Janik’s literary interests should come to embrace aphorisms founded on a shift of meaning in the form of puns. In his work he is gradually raising some very disturbing questions and pointing to serious problems concerning the further development of humankind, while all the time widening his range of themes and styles. Literary experts liken Janik’s poetic virtuosity to that in the work of Miroslav Valek, while in the opinion of the Russian poet, translator and literary critic, Natalia Shvedova, Valek is more profound and Janik more inventive. According to Sarita Jenamani, Secretary-General of the PEN International’s Austrian Centre, Pavol Janik has his place in world literature. He has translated in poetic form several collections of poetry and written works of drama with elements of the style of the Theatre of the Absurd.

Pavol Janik’s literary works have been published not only in Slovakia, but also in Albania, Argentina, Austria, Bangladesh, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Columbia, Croatia, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Macedonia, Mexico, Moldova, Morocco, Nepal, Pakistan, Poland,  the People’s Republic of China, the Republic of China (Taiwan), Romania, the Russian Federation, Serbia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Syria, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, the United States of America, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Venezuela and Vietnam.

ocenenie Pavlovi Janíkovi

English translation by Smiljana Piksiades:


Behind the horizon the light is spraying.
The sky tremble’s like a tear.
The winged summer wilts.
Through the algae’s a lonesome dew slides.

Trees hold empty nests in their hands.
I quietly sing birds psalms.
In the empty night, empty star is falling.
Empty gaze of water is still cloudy.

I read an exclamation of silence
and drink the morning blood stream aloud.
The morning is taking deep breaths.

With its soft palms of the hands,
the haze crumbles poems.
Heart’s beating is not quieter.
Unbelievable sobs, like as if it was dead.


English translation by Pavol Janik Jr.:


Do not be afraid of sudden outcries of the orchestra!
That does not mean the conductor
has seen my hand on your knee.
Allow a kiss.
Know that your sex outrages you only as much
as the music is anxious about the applause.


English translation by James Sutherland Smith:


You escape from me like gas. With astonishment I watch how with a single scrawl of your legs you ignite your silk dress.

With such blinding nakedness you pre-empt sky-blue flame.

Blazingly ablaze and perhaps wholly otherwise I address a fire which you will no longer damp down.

That time I wanted to declare at least what was essential to all chance passers-by, to all chance passing aircraft.

So under such circumstances who wouldn’t have spoilt it?



I admire the smiles of the wax figures and the drunks.

Their faith. Their humility. Their precision. Their infallible wisdom determined by the office of normalization.

I admire their wallpapered souls full of light and brocade. Their responsibility and legality surpassing the price of taxis and wine.

I’m terrified by the indifference with which they listen to the heavy breathing of the last trolley buses.



The sun smashes our windows.
An urgent song reaches us from the street.

On the cellophane sky
steam condenses.
Unconfirmed reports are reproduced
about the wind.

The trees are the first to begin to talk
about the two of us.



The air grows still.
As in an illustrated weekly
I leaf through your eyes.

To hear silence
as it walks in new shoes
and lulls the buzzing bees.
Somebody furiously addresses us with wings.

It’s said that you’ve seen
burning birds tumble from the sky!

It’s just at the base of your breasts
there’s something making a ceaseless hullabaloo.



You come from a scent.
A crumpled flower.
I inhale you tangled like smoke.

You inhabit the starry sky
and dials of digital watches.

You stupefy me dependably
and faster than light.

My head aches from you
and to this moment I mistake you for music.



you leap from star to star.
And each time there’s a chime
like the kiss of crystal glasses.

Thousands of your faces
skate with perseverance
on frozen ponds.

I open you 
with a violin’s clef
and seek the bow
whose elasticity can equal you.

Deep in you
instead of strings
I’ve touched tears.



The moment we each have our own key
to the same flat
I’ll shift a piece of the garden
to the second floor.

Sometimes I’ll come personally.
and carefully shaved
to listen to home concerts.

I’ll come for sure
clumsily like a piano,
and always well-tempered.


(To be continued…)

Niektoré funkcie môžu používať súbory cookie na prispôsobenie obsahu, na vykonávanie funkcií sociálnych médií a na analýzu návštevnosti. Niektoré informácie o tom, ako používate našu stránku, môžu používať aj tretie strany, ktorých softvérové doplnky používame. • We use cookies to personalise content and ads, to provide social media features and to analyse our traffic.  We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. View more
Cookies settings
Súhlasím / Accept
Nesúhlasím / Decline
Privacy & Cookie policy
Privacy & Cookies policy
Cookie nameActive

Kto sme

Webová adresa našej stránky je:


Keď návštevníci stránky napíšu komentár, uchovávame údaje, ktoré sú zobrazené vo formulári s komentárom, spolu s IP adresou návštevníka a reťazcom agenta z prehliadača používateľa, aby sme mohli vylúčiť spam. Službe Gravatar môžeme poskytnúť anonymizovaný reťazec odvodený od vašej e-mailovej adresy (tzv. hash), aby sme mohli zistiť, či túto službu používate. Zásady ochrany osobných údajov služby Gravatar nájdete tu: Po schválení vášho komentára bude spolu s vašim komentárom zverejnený aj váš profilový obrázok.


Ak na stránku nahrávate obrázky, nemali by ste spolu s nimi nahrávať aj meta-údaje o polohe (EXIF GPS). Návštevníci stránky si môžu vaše obrázky stiahnuť a dostať sa k údajom o polohe, ktoré sú zapísané v meta-údajoch.

Súbory cookie

Ak na našej stránke napíšete komentár, prehliadač vám môže dať možnosť uložiť do súboru cookie vaše meno, e-mailovú adresu a webovú stránku. Je to kvôli vášmu pohodliu, aby ste tie isté údaje nemuseli vyplňovať znovu pri nasledujúcich komentároch. Životnosť týchto súborov cookie trvá jeden rok. Na našej prihlasovacej stránke môžeme nastaviť jeden dočasný súbor cookie, aby sme vedeli zistiť, či váš prehliadač tieto súbory akceptuje. Tento súbor cookie neobsahuje žiadne osobné údaje a hneď po ukončení prehliadača sa vymaže. Keď sa prihlásite, nastaví sa niekoľko súborov cookie, do ktorých sa uložia vaše prihlasovacie informácie a vaše preferencie zobrazenia. Životnosť prihlasovacích súborov cookie trvá dva dni a súborov s preferenciami jeden rok. Ak si vyberiete možnosť „Zapamätať si ma“ (po anglicky „Remember Me“), prihlasovací súbor vydrží dva týždne. Ak sa odhlásite, prihlasovacie súbory cookie sa odstránia. Ak budete upravovať alebo zverejníte článok, vo vašom prehliadači sa uloží ďalší súbor cookie. V tomto súbore cookie nie sú žiadne osobné údaje a je v ňom len identifikátor článku, ktorý ste práve mali otvorený. Po uplynutí 1 dňa bude neplatný.

Zahrnutý obsah z iných webových stránok

Články na tejto lokalite môžu obsahovať zahrnutý obsah (napr. videá, obrázky, články atď.). Zahrnutý obsah z iných webových stránok sa správa rovnako, ako keby sa návštevník nachádzal na webových lokalitách, z ktorých takýto obsah pochádza. Tieto webové lokality môžu tiež zhromažďovať údaje o vás, používať súbory cookie, zahrnovať nástroje sledovania od tretích strán a monitorovať vaše interakcie s týmto zahrnutým obsahom. Samozrejme sa to týka aj situácie, ak máte na danej lokalite konto a ste prihlásení, vtedy tiež môžu sledovať vaše interakcie so zahrnutým obsahom.

S kým zdieľame vaše údaje

V prípade, že požiadate o resetovanie hesla, do príslušného e-mailu bude zahrnutá vaša IP adresa.

Ako dlho uchovávame vaše údaje

Ak na stránke napíšete komentár, tento komentár a s ním súvisiace meta-údaje sa uchovávajú na neurčito. Dôvodom je, aby sme mohli rozoznať následné súvisiace komentáre a aby sme ich mohli potvrdzovať automaticky a nenechali čakať na manuálne potvrdenie. Užívateľom, ktorí si na našich stránkach vytvoria konto (ak bude taká možnosť), tiež uchovávame osobné informácie, ktoré oni zadajú vo svojom používateľskom profile. Všetci používatelia môžu svoje osobné informácie kedykoľvek vidieť, upraviť aj odstrániť (s výnimkou používateľského mena, ktoré sa nedá zmeniť). Tieto informácie sú tiež viditeľné pre administrátorov stránok, ktorí ich tiež môžu meniť.

Aké práva môžete uplatňovať na svoje údaje

Ak máte ne tejto stránke konto alebo ak ste napísali komentáre, môžete požiadať o exportovanie osobných údajov, ktoré o vás uchovávame vrátane údajov, ktoré ste nám poskytli. Môžete tiež požiadať, aby sme všetky takéto informácie o vás  odstránili. Toto sa však netýka informácií, ktoré sme povinní uchovávať z administratívnych, právnych alebo bezpečnostných dôvodov.

Kam odosielame vaše údaje

Komentáre návštevníkov môže kontrolovať automatická antispamová služba tretej strany.

Who we are

Our website address is:


When visitors leave comments on the site we collect the data shown in the comments form, and also the visitor’s IP address and browser user agent string to help spam detection. An anonymized string created from your email address (also called a hash) may be provided to the Gravatar service to see if you are using it. The Gravatar service privacy policy is available here: After approval of your comment, your profile picture is visible to the public in the context of your comment.


If you upload images to the website, you should avoid uploading images with embedded location data (EXIF GPS) included. Visitors to the website can download and extract any location data from images on the website.


If you leave a comment on our site you may opt-in to saving your name, email address and website in cookies. These are for your convenience so that you do not have to fill in your details again when you leave another comment. These cookies will last for one year. If you visit our login page, we will set a temporary cookie to determine if your browser accepts cookies. This cookie contains no personal data and is discarded when you close your browser. When you log in, we will also set up several cookies to save your login information and your screen display choices. Login cookies last for two days, and screen options cookies last for a year. If you select "Remember Me", your login will persist for two weeks. If you log out of your account, the login cookies will be removed. If you edit or publish an article, an additional cookie will be saved in your browser. This cookie includes no personal data and simply indicates the post ID of the article you just edited. It expires after 1 day.

Embedded content from other websites

Articles on this site may include embedded content (e.g. videos, images, articles, etc.). Embedded content from other websites behaves in the exact same way as if the visitor has visited the other website. These websites may collect data about you, use cookies, embed additional third-party tracking, and monitor your interaction with that embedded content, including tracking your interaction with the embedded content if you have an account and are logged in to that website.

Who we share your data with

If you request a password reset, your IP address will be included in the reset email.

How long we retain your data

If you leave a comment, the comment and its metadata are retained indefinitely. This is so we can recognize and approve any follow-up comments automatically instead of holding them in a moderation queue. For users that register on our website (if any), we also store the personal information they provide in their user profile. All users can see, edit, or delete their personal information at any time (except they cannot change their username). Website administrators can also see and edit that information.

What rights you have over your data

If you have an account on this site, or have left comments, you can request to receive an exported file of the personal data we hold about you, including any data you have provided to us. You can also request that we erase any personal data we hold about you. This does not include any data we are obliged to keep for administrative, legal, or security purposes.

Where we send your data

Visitor comments may be checked through an automated spam detection service.
Save settings
Cookies settings
Návrat hore