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Kamarck, Edward (ed.) / Arts in society: tenth anniversary issue

Pettinella, Dora M.
[Paolo Buzzi--1956],   pp. [103]-106 PDF (4.3 MB)

Page 105

Paolo Buzzi was considered one of the
founders of Futurism, even by Apollinaire
who had words of praise for his style. It
was the only real force of his life; it
embodied his autonomous soul, his formal
audacity. From his poem on Garibaldi down
to his calligrammes, when he wrote of
the conflagration and human tragedy, of
World War One, his ideal of poetry was life
moving on gigantic wheels in a vortex
invisible to eyes of the world. It contained
a unique artistic belief which stretched his
musical gamut to the utmost, rendering
new ecstasy for a society that moved
electrically and mechanically in the
spirit of war and sports.
Buzzi was hailed as the new poet of
literature with his rhapsodies of Leopardi;
later the three volumes of l'ESILIO in
which he analyzed the spiritual Italian
crisis at the beginning of the 19th century.
With F. P. Marinetti and Sem Benelli he
founded and edited the celebrated
International Review called POESIA. He was
most prolific as a poet and writer. A
recent bibliographical volume contains 172
pages listing his works on poetry, prose,
theatre, translations, lectures, and a
libretto on an opera.
Buzzi received high honors from Brianza,
the region he deeply loved, where he
never found the glory he anticipated nor
the deep affection he had craved, to which
however he dedicated a lifetime of study
with great labor and devotion. His
creative spirit yearned towards futurism in
feverish anxiety. He was a futurist who had
never buried his past; since it retained a
special charm for him, a joy that did not
exist for other futurists. His past became
part of his personality, his style, in an
embrace of conception, images, expressions,
words and rhythm. His main obsession
had always been the life beyond; he had
searched hospitals and cemeteries,
anonymous crowds of nameless men in
institutions and asylums. He sought the
ante-vita and the outre-tomb for an
explanation to the enigma of man, of
man's existence, of man's fate. It was the
noble torment of his entire life.
The ancestral, fantastic negromantic
tendency of his dual personality; the
attraction of the void, his dominant passion.
The electric and the explosive
counterbalanced each other and became a
contrast in his psychological feelings,
he broke down under the strain, suffered a
mental disturbance; where the hero became
a criminal and the human a saint. He
questioned his past, the soul of his
childhood overwhelmed by fear, and
continued his intimate endless search
without respite.
Basically, Buzzi was imbued with a very
deep historical sense, typical of all Italian
men of culture. He enjoyed the literature
of the diarists, the abundance of the
journals that were published during his
time. But at sixty, he decided to
abandon politics and dedicate himself
wholly to poetry. He wrote his first novel:
PANE E POESIA (Bread and Poetry) a
medley of short stories, romantic tales,
lyrics, lectures, essays, tragedies, comedies,
translations: a work that filled five
volumes, covered four generations
throughout a period of 80 years.
During the beginning of the 20th century,
during the terrible years of war that
ruined his country; Italy could count her
good poets on the fingers of one hand;
poets whose work was of genuine
sensibility. Among these was Buzzi; one of
his early poems LA GABBIA (The Cage) was
translated in all the world's languages, a
unique event in Italian literature. He
wrote this poem when he was a recluse in
Palazzo Monforte, surrounded by
companions whose aspirations were modest
and naturally limited. He called himself
"The Seeker of Crystals" the "Sun of
Prism" until the Futurist Manifesto broke out
into a near scandal, in the year of the
general elections. The following year, the
futuristic spectacle opened at the
International Lyric Theatre of Milan -
closing with a poem by Buzzi to General
Asinari of Bernezzo, who consequently was
forced to retire.
In 1935 Paolo Buzzi was set on resuming
his Muse. He returned to the roads of his
childhood, visited his old home region,
Brianza, the green hills, the clear ponds, the
steep cliffs. Brianza had undergone many
changes since the war; but he loved the
place wrote his stupendous GIGI Dl
PURITA', probably the most original
delicate book ever written about Saint Louis
of Gonzaga. Later he traveled to Egypt,
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