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Audrey Magee
Building the Barricade
by Anna Świrszczyńska

I have chosen the work of Anna Świrszczyńska, a Polish poet who joined the Resistance against Nazi invaders during the Second World War. Her book of war poetry, Building the Barricade, was translated into English by Magnus Jan Kryński and Robert A. Maguire and was published in 1979. That the title poem resonates again in 2022 is a heartbreak. You will find the poem in Faber’s Second World War Poems, edited by Hugh Haughton.

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