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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol 6, No. 6. May 26, 1943



A modern literary giant, Mayakovski, has been translated, and a book of his verse has at last reached us. It is unfortunately apparent that the translator has considerable weaknesses, but all the same the poetry comes through.

It is the radiant energy of inspired genius which throws aside conventional expression and by sheer vitality carries his reader with him. Idealist and socialist, the poet regarded his art, not as a personal possession for his own use, but as a social weapon for his people. It is not uncommon to hear people speak of him as a man who prostituted his art. They are wrong! How wrong may be easily discovered by reading his verses. Writing on "unpoetic" subjects be is still inspired by his ideas, and his genius points the everyday object and moral with clarity. His death was a loss to literature, but the work he left behind is neither trivial nor outmoded. The translator has made only passable work—his poem "Lenin"—is the best in the selection we have. There the form seems knit with the subject in a whole which requires no change. It is a treat to discover a new literary colossus.