Adolf Fierla

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Adolf Fierla
Born (1908-01-16)16 January 1908
Orlová, Austria-Hungary
Died 8 September 1967(1967-09-08) (aged 59)
London, United Kingdom
Occupation Educator, poet, writer
Language Polish, Cieszyn Silesian dialect
Ethnicity Polish
Citizenship Czechoslovak, British

Adolf Fierla (16 January 1908 – 8 September 1967) was a Polish writer and poet from the region of Cieszyn Silesia.

He was born 16 January 1908 in Orlová to a coal miner's family and graduated from the local Juliusz Słowacki Polish Gymnasium. Fierla later studied Polish studies at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków and Slavic studies in Prague. He later worked as a teacher of Polish language in Polish elementary schools in Zaolzie and eventually in Polish Gymnasium in Orlová.

When World War II broke up Fierla fled like many other Poles to the east. After his return German Nazi authorities jailed him in 1940 and incarcerated in Dachau and later in Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camps.[1] Released from the camp worked as a worker in Pietwałd and in 1944 was forced to join the German Army and was captured in France by the British forces. Fierla then stayed in the Western Europe, initially in Italy, where he taught in lyceum for Polish girls in Porto San Giorgio;[2] in France where he taught in one of Polish gymnasiums,[3] and then from 1958 in the United Kingdom. He continued his literary life there cooperating with Polish press and several other organizations of which he was a member, e.g. Zrzeszenie Ewangelików Polaków w Wielkiej Brytanii (Association of Polish Protestants in the United Kingdom). Fierla died 8 September 1967 in London and is buried in the Finchley district of London.

Fierla wrote his works in literary Polish and also in Cieszyn Silesian dialect. He focused mainly on the life of the Cieszyn Silesia people, especially those of the Beskids mountain ranges and coal basin around the city of Karviná.[4] His works includes many religious motives. Fierla also translated to Polish works of Czech poet Jiří Wolker.

Fierla's typical motive of his native coal mining region can be observed in the Kopalnie (Coal Mines) poem from his debut poetry collection Przydrożne kwiaty (Roadside Flowers):

Today I have toured the divine world
Humbled and begging;
And bitter tears came to my eyes
Flowing ceaselessly,
As the quiet fields of all villages
Have been changed into coal mines.
I have toured a quiet patch today
Where flowers once used to grow,
And where a ram and a sheep grazed
Along a footpath near the hut,
And where today, instead of straight grasses
A day of bloody repayment roars.
I stood today at the threshold of a shaft
In the worry of a steamy moment,
When the miners black from coal
Went down into the drift.
And my soul was touched by dry pain:
As they took out a man broken to pieces
—Adolf Fierla, [5]

Works[edit]

  • Przydrożne kwiaty (1928) — poetry collection
  • Ondraszek (1930/1931) — novel
  • Cienie i blaski (1931) — poetry collection
  • Hałdy i inne opowiadania górnicze (1931) — short stories collection
  • Dziwy na groniach (1932) — poetry collection
  • Kopalnia słoneczna (1933) — poetry collection
  • Kolędy beskidzkie (1935)
  • Kamień w polu (1938) — short stories collection
  • Poezje religijne (1971)

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Sikora 1993, 18.
  2. ^ Sikora 2008, 3.
  3. ^ Hierowski 1947, 192.
  4. ^ Hierowski 1947, 69.
  5. ^ Fierla 1928, 56.

References[edit]

  • Fierla, Adolf (1928). Przydrożne kwiaty. Frysztat: Ludowa Drukarnia. 
  • Sikora, Władysław (2008-04-29). "O Adolfie Fierli". Głos Ludu. p. 3.