Mysyk, Vasyl

Mysyk, Vasyl [Мисик, Василь], b 24 July 1907 in Novopavlivka, Katerynoslav gubernia, d 3 March 1983 in Kharkiv. Writer and translator. He debuted as a poet in Chervonyi shliakh in 1923. From 1924 he lived in Kharkiv, where he belonged to the writers' groups Pluh and Prolitfront, contributed to Literaturnyi iarmarok, studied English, German, and Persian, and published the poetry collections Travy (Grasses, 1927), Blakytnyi mist (The Azure Bridge, 1929), Chotyry vitry (The Four Winds, 1930), Turksyb (1932), and Budivnyky (Builders, 1933) and the story collection Galaganiv son (Galagan's Dream, 1930). After visiting Central Asia he wrote the essay collections Tysiachi kilometriv (Thousands of Kilometers, 1931) and Kazakhstans’ka magistral’ (The Kazakhstan Trunk Line, 1931). He was arrested during the Stalinist terror in December 1934 and was imprisoned in labor camps in the Soviet Arctic until 1940. From 1942 to 1945 he was in a German concentration camp for Soviet prisoners of war. After being ‘rehabilitated’ in 1956, he published editions of his selected works (1958, 1967, 1977), the new collections Borozny (Furrows, 1962), Verkhovittia (Top Branches, 1963), Chornotrop (The Snow-free Way, 1966), Lan (The Farmland, 1970), and Bereh (The Shore, 1972), and the story collection Brians’kyi lis (Briansk Forest, 1978). He became a leading translator of English, American, German, and Persian literature. Published separately were his translations of the poetry of Robert Burns (1932), Rudaki (1962), Omar Khayyam (1965), John Keats (1968), Hafez (1971), and Firdousi (1975). A book of his articles and essays was published in 1982, and a collection of memoirs about him and V. Khytruk's literary biography appeared in 1987.

 Roman Senkus

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 3 (1993).]




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