I was born in Opole, a beautiful town in the south-west part of Poland. Opole is also the capital of Polish songs, organized yearly since June 1963.
What is the greatest thing about the place you call home?
It is just my place on the Earth, where I was born and grew up. Where I popped my first steps and learned the first words. Where I experienced my first love and the pain of a broken heart. It is a place, where my children were born. It is also a place that I decided to leave after a political turmoil in search of work. But at the same time, a place to which I return with sentiment, heartbeat, and tears in my eyes, but I am coming back.
What turns you on creatively?
I am a watchful observer. I watch life passing by. Due to the fact that I have experienced many sad moments in my life, I am very sensitive to human misfortune, and I can even see them behind the screen of laughter. I am often called a “sad poetess”. The inspiration for me is paintings and music as well, and here I mean works created by God and by people.
What is your favorite word, and can you use it in a poetic sentence?
Love is a timeless word that poets often reach for. Love is ubiquitous in my poems, love for my partner, for my children, for the country I left several years ago when I decided to emigrate for work.
What is your pet peeve?
Stupidity in any form.
What defines Bozena Helena Mazur-Nowak?
Such questions force us to reflect on our own lives.
I am the daughter of repatriates who, after WWII, built a common house in a new place on earth. Both my parents were very sensitive, they both wrote poems, sang, and painted beautifully. As adults, they graduated from high school. Our home has always been full of people, music, and poetry.
As a small child, I often sat under the table and soaked up every word. My father was able to spend his last money on a book. My mother scolded him for that a lot. It was he who taught me to read with understanding. My grandmothers, Maria and Helena, taught me unconditional love and that you should forgive because then life is simpler and easier. I have been writing poems since I can remember. However, I dared to show them only when I left the country, when the longing for the country, the years of childhood and youth, tugged with an unmercifully aching heart. I write out of the need of my heart.
Bozena Helena Mazur-Nowak is a Pole, since 2004 lives in the UK. She has published eight volumes of poetry. She also writes prose and released two novels and a few short story collections. Her work may be found in about 100 worldwide anthologies and magazines. Winner of many poetry competitions. Proud holder of many diplomas, awards, and distinctions. She is also a translator to fellow poets, translates from and into English. Her poetry was translated into 20 languages.
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