Salvatore Quasimodo

Salvatore Quasimodo was born in Modica (Sicilia) in 1901; he was a poet and journalist. In 1908, he moved from Modica to Messina where he wrote his first poems, having 16 years old, in a small journal that he edited with his friends. In 1919, he moved to Rome and studied engineering in the polytechnic but he couldn’t finish it.In 1930, he published his first collection named Acque e Terre (waters and lands) in the Solaria magazine; two years later, he published Oboe sommerso (Submerged oboe) that called a great interest from the literary critics.

In 1941, he was teacher in the Milan conservatory and published Ed è subito sera (And suddenly the night) with which he achieved great success. In 1959, he obtained the Nobel price of literature. During his last years, he did a great activity as a journalist criticizing the consumerism of modern man. He died in 1968 due to a cerebral hemorrhage.

Poems in Italian

Naufrago Nazco tua luce,
declino di acqua limpida.

Foglia che brucia sereno
aria consolati.

Sradicati dal vivo
cuore di transizione
Io sono un limite invano.

Il tuo dono tremendo
parole, Signore,
regolarmente pagato.

Svegliati dai morti:
ognuno ha preso la loro terra
e sua moglie.

Tu hai guardato dentro,
nel buio delle viscere:
né hanno la mia disperazione
nella sua anima:

Io sono un uomo solo
un inferno.
Salvatore Quasimodo

Castaway Nazco thy light,
decline of clear water.

Serene leaf burning
air comforted.

Uprooted from the living
heart transitional
I am a vain limit.

Your tremendous gift
words, Lord,
regularly paid.

Wake from the dead:
each has taken their land
and his wife.

Thou hast looked inside,
in the darkness of the viscera:
neither have my despair
in his soul:

I am a single man
one hell.
Salvatore Quasimodo