Miron Białoszewski (1922–1983) was one of Poland’s greatest postwar poets, a playwright, and an actor. Deported to a German work camp following the Warsaw Uprising, he escaped a month later and eventually returned to the devastated city after the war. His first volume of poetry, Obroty rzeczy (Revolution of Things), appeared in 1956 in Warsaw and created a sensation. This was followed by several other collections of poetry, A Memoir of the Warsaw Uprising and other narrative prose, and travelogues. Idiosyncratic and notoriously difficult to translate, he became a minor cult figure in the United States with the appearance of The Revolution of Things: Selected Poems of Miron Białoszewski (1974).
Białoszewski, the great Polish poet, memorializes the heroic two-month uprising of the Polish population against their Nazi oppressors in 1944—an operation which saw the slaughter of 200,000 civilians. His memoir rescues a lost story of World War II even as it pays tribute to his and his comrades’ vanished youths. Personal and profound, this memoir brings those harrowing days to vivid life.