Janko Ferk – The end of Still Nature – Collected cycles, part 2

At the bottom of Janko Ferk’s records there is a moving sensation of observation, yoked by a „sharp razor of a mind“ and a plethora of other surprisingly coined images. Thematically speaking he raises a warning about going from the ivory towers to the arena of life: “one / is philosophy / and elated peace / the other / is life / and its struggles / for our bread”. In this almost essayistic expression a fate of a poet and a fate of a man are acquired, ranging from the intimate to the public, from the birth in time and space to the existence in the eternity. The purpose of the poetry is of course to overcome this duality, to blur the borders and to try to speak from the whole and from their point of view, regardless of how insignificant they may seem, even about the most visible extremes. This is why opposing or complementing pairs are only theoretical aids used to rationalize those elements, otherwise irrational and elusive in any other real poetry.
Despite these widely elaborated basics, gaining additional dimensions in author’s work, Ferk’s early work is focused on the type of writing that can be most aptly called death turned into words. With no self-pity and confessionally speaking the death is inevitable; we often seem to find patterns of incantation in these lines, as if the chanting of the names of the death might set us free.
In terms of death as the subject the author later indicates other realms as well. With the same approach of distance and detachment he critically discourses on morality and the lack thereof, occasionally looking at the world through the glass of Cankar or Kafka, and, along inner pliability, showing immense lingual, metaphoric and rhetoric proficiency.
In some poems the author copes with more concrete space and time, and we are faced with a combination of fierce criticism and firm self-awareness. This is no philosophical determination of abstract phenomenon but a record of the experience. Thanatos is joined by Eros. If death is described scantily and ornament-free, love is acknowledged lusciously, like a rite, like a great baroque mass service.
The diversity of Ferk’s lyrical poetry is not only fraught with content, but also expressed through the form and style. Changes of tenses and cases, the use of various speaking perspectives, combining conceptual and visual languages, detachment and expressions offering flexibility, especially because these changes show no sign of compulsion or lust but come naturally and smoothly. A poet is looking around, determining his position in the world; he walks right through the experienced death into the noble love. Simultaneously, like a sage from the Far East, he is sitting quietly and thoughtfully near a raindrop mirroring the cosmos.