Hristo Fotev – the big “little prince” of Bulgarian contemporary poetry


Throughout the history there are individuals who are remembered years, even centuries after their death. Praised, spitting followed or outcasts, they all left their indelible imprint deeply ingrown brand on the living, quivering flesh and thought of the generations after them. People who with their restless spirit and messianic presence, supplanting the boundaries of mainstream life’s of their era and direct it to its peak to peak, which is the aspiration and objective of every living thing. Seamlessly with thundering force, they mold, cut the minds of their contemporaries and their descendants, transferring invisible bridges over all the differences. Largely misunderstood, more or less recognized, they still present – even in his absence – and continue to be what they always were – artists, creators, a strong and solid foundation over which generations after them to build their cases and success. Scaffolding, without which it would not be conceivable our rich, multi cultural – historical heritage, our beautiful and complex as human relationships life.

In Bulgarian history and modern life there is very strong, dignified and charming with their biography and works, people. Their names are inflected with all sorts of epithets, their life is stripped to the last detail by scientists and all sorts of experts even claim to be almighty judge’s people. But words, eloquent or not or even not so good attitude and approach, despite the desire to be comprehensive and fully understand, clarify and demonstrate their full luster large in our history and life, this is impossible. Because each person is a mystery and enigma complete amenable to the disclosure, and why this is the meaning of being a man – to leave behind his waking imagination, frantically seeking answers – consciousness and eternal – the light that leads others forward.

Thankfully, Bulgaria, from the currently poor genre can boast unlimited number of individuals who, with a flourish of their presence, with their notable and noticeable cases have a place in the golden book of centuries of its existence. Especially in the historical – cultural aspect. Mother or stepmother activists and artists, Bulgaria was and is and will be the key reason for their importance.

Speaking of culture and art in contemporary developments, including many names of writers, playwrights, painters, and others certainly name in Bulgarian poetry anthology is great Hristo Fotev – the Burgas seagull, who serenaded sea life in a unique and incompatible ways in the froth.

This “weak, low volume, always slightly bent, beautiful, magnetic to the public, always in black shirt and black jeans, mythical, charismatic, born of love and drink, a cigarette and elevated nostalgia, reborn for hidden affliction, insomnia and ruthlessly a melancholy breast otherness “is one of the most iconic figures of Burgas, part of the mystery of poetry but never – cultural figure in pathetic – foolish sense.

Rather, the young hero “bristling in poetry” of his contemporaries in Burgas – the then Mecca of poetry carved from wax seemed shrouded in smoke in the club, in the former “bourgeois Burgas brothel” with a glass of white wine in hand Mirrors in the thick glass of purple sunset death, he remains forever black and white, graphic, fantasy, playing a hopelessly in love with a young man and his dying breath, recite their own prayers and silences, pauses, until finally turns himself into a huge, empty gaping pause.

How to describe such a person, how to fit in a few sentences autobiographical data element of his talent, how to defy the tide of restless spirit, indomitable force of his gaze, close-fitting to the madness in many palette landscape of life beyond the appearance of forms, how to interrupt his desperate clinches in love and beauty, and it wedged in a vain attempt to measure the distance from human flesh to an almost otherworldly sense of immateriality? Still …

Hristo Fotev Konstantinov was born on March 25, Annunciation, back in 1934 in Istanbul. In 1940, 6 – years old, settled with his family in Burgas, Kodzhakafaliyska Mahala neighborhood of so-called refugees. At school “Petar Beron” – Burgas, then continued in factory – factory school, culminating in 1951 in the town of Sliven.

Unsuccessful candidate at the Art Academy, then eight months is a sailor on a vessel. After doing his military service briefly Miner Mine hood (between Sliven and Yambol).

During the period 1957 – 1959 was a mural painter in studio to Home “Decorating” – Yambol. Then he became editor of the edition of the mine “Black Sea”, near Burgas.

His first collection of poems is “Ballad travel” issue in 1961. For it he won the second prize for poetry. The next year (1962) he became a member of the Union of Bulgarian Writers and in theatrical season from 1962 to 1963, together with Slavcho Krasinski is a playwright of the Theater “A. Budevska” – Burgas.

In 1965, he received the literary prize of Bourgas (the district council for culture), the book “Lyrics” in 1967 – the same award for “sentimental tributes.”
In 1969 the book was awarded the “Port”.

During 1964 – 1990 he occupied the post of “creative machine” of Bourgas writers is a member of the editorial board of the Burgas Almanac “Sea” and its editor from 1990 to 1992.

In 1994, at the invitation of the Director of the Burgas Theater C. Paskov again become his playwright. In the same year he received the literary prize “Golden Pegasus” and in 1995 was awarded the title “Honorary citizen of the city of Burgas.”

For a few it is known that the great poet has written two plays. One of them is the mysterious title “Castle” – not so much a play as impression for his youth, his mother, his father, his sister and his brother, their “castle” on the outskirts of Burgas.

It is quenched as a suppository, devoid of friends and their natural environment Burgas in the darkness of his apartment in Sofia on July 27 (Seven Saints), 2002.

These are facts. String of life’s history and assesses the “creative” events and objectify it, gripping person willfully reckless a dreamer in love with the very life of the person with a soul bird took breath of fish and dolphins, the thrill (or roar!), wave, intertwining his voice in prayer moan of love and eternal search for truth – purely a human, but almost gigantic efforts to overcome the mortality of the flesh.

But these facts are not enough. After they left a big ellipsis – the unwritten between the lines of this “short” autobiography elusive for even the most eloquent words, unforgiving and unforgivable robbing meanings…

There are insufficient published books, almanacs, fit a tiny piece of the miracle called Christo Fotev. Not enough late admissions, apologies and honorary titles – they will not change unacceptance and distortion of a human life, a pure and deeply conscious need not serve the pen and the need for poetry and love in people.

Hristo Fotev gone forever from us gnaw like a fish – sword “piranhas” clinging to predatory in his innermost – the soul – with their blasphemous babblings, misunderstanding and do not want to see him – the Pilgrims, who was not only a poet, but tool for poetry, like Federico Garcia Lorca, Dimcho Debelyanov … Like himself. Because the poetry is like an ancient legend, filled with mythical and mysterious, almost transparent images, poetry, listening instead to study in bed. Or dissection on the desk desktop.

But before he left us, he left from Burgas city, which itself was created and immortalized in prayer – your deepest insights, to which he returned with anticipation and ecstatic outburst:

“This train to Burgas is so slow.

I dream of rainy beach.
This is my life, my strange
and only verbal landscape.
Here I am all … They forget
I’m short and bad … I’m me.
Voice of Glarus and I am tactile
in this world … Here in Burgas
I’m dying of tenderness and rage,
but I was born a feat.
Voice of the seagull, oh seagull scream –
outrageous memory for me …”

The reason, the real reason to make it a “memory” for Burgas, is though only physically, of understanding, and therefore defamation of his acquired almost sacred dimensions poetry. Of people for whom the world and relationships are like a photographic negative – black – white, devoid of color, shape and vibrancy. Those who condemn without thinking; rise pyres and burned her poetry and music, and what’s worse – the souls of their sculptors.
Even conceal their poisoned by ostentatious false to soulless political and cultural mores of those “troubled” years. And words, words can ascend, but the most ruthless killers

“In the first poetry Hristo Fotev appeared a trend that slowly led to his killing as a poet … Trend – to gloss over the eyes – appeared with the poem “The Executive Committee shall meet.” It extols the Executive Committee of the party. Presented in a false light is one of the blackest pages in the life of Bulgaria – the years of Stalin’s regime … Gifted not only the muse of lyrical art, but one trick, he quickly grasped under the live mode … Hristo Fotev decided to outsmart himself. He was not as naive believer Nedyalko Yordanov, but smart enough to hide … Wanting to please and party and poetry itself Fotev had prepared his own coffin. The game of Burgas poet and bohemian, the only free artist, celebrations and readings, did not save him. His lira was already dead, its strings were covered with rust from verbose and fancy metaphors … ”

These words, spoken by BBC radio emigrated to England Burgas poet Mary Kondakova to which Fotev himself is fed a warm and has sold creator of Burgas, distributed by the state security organs as “confidential annex” of BTA on August 18 in 1989. Helpfully printed and circulated this statement probably was intended to set public opinion against the poet and his “dangerous supporters.”

But that’s not the worst. Scary consequences of spew invective (and silence people who were able to “fix” this mistake, to prevent fatalities on the slopes words poetry and personality of Hristo Fotev).

Burgas left without his “little prince.” Two years later ermine poet born to a drowning man, “emigrated” to land in Sofia, like Heminguey’s “old man”, but without the sea.

And, almost incomprehensible and very painfully what happens next. Embittered by the betrayal of his foreign and poet, as he says to his closest, hate Burgas and do not return there. At his residence near the sea became his refuge a small house in the village Ravadinovo.

But not escape is that, while frantic attempt to self-preservation. Changed and at the same time – true to his nature to defend only himself, his wonderful selfishness prevents him from all temptations and vices of the so-called democracy. More spirit than matter, he never complained about his fate from their poverty. Lives in a world of her own, gradual and imperceptible to those around him in a special state of his poetic genius, probably the highest stage of wisdom, elevation and complete renunciation of earthly things. As he said long ago:

“Why increasingly powerless heart

is my body? And when the night
I’ll throw in bold face –
like a glove – death? ”
While it failed to match the landscape gave freedom in sight of the capital, Hristo Fotev remain forever cut in altitude moist air and splendor of Burgas. It remains his sacred poetry, inhabited by mythical, magical images and realities. His poetry is spectacular, religious, uncultured, unlikely Square, but never charged, theatrical, not stage. It is dramatic, but not tragic, accessible, yet untouchable. Utterly free from physical dimensions disobedience to the commands of autumn. Because the great Hristo Fotev has higher ability to amaze life without appearing superficial and ridiculous. Attracted by the ordinary vastness perceived a sense of vision and extraordinary thinking and feeling man like Little Prince, his cloak of pine resin and salt, could be casually cloak pieces on bare soul. It can be torn and thrown behind only and only by him.

And yes, this magnificent alive descendant of the Little Prince has done, but with a modern self-sacrifice Christ, as born in the arms of a wizard Bosphorus: magnificent, impressive, hypnotic, so real, like it’s true.

Genuine gentle to particularly vulnerable, Fotev left to burn as a torch phosphate at sea, seeing eye, staring into the darkness to save our souls. He showed us how opium production of poetry, leave us your recipes and alchemical fulfilled, ending his mission on earth is back in the shadows of eternity, leaving sand in our future memories and suffered its intimate insight:
“The worst
not our death, perhaps terrible
is that we are alive in her dark plastic! ”


©By Borislava Boneva’2013




1.”A landscape of words” Hristo Fotev, Ed “Zahari Stoyanov”, Sofia 2002
2. “Farewell to Prince – 77 years from the birth of the Bulgarian poet’s love” by Rumen Leonidov.
3. “Sofia – Hristo Fotev city and the city created by Hristo Fotev” author Dr. George Chaldakov.
4. “Hristo Fotev – frankly”, author Nedyalko Yordanov.






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