"Even if you have an apartment and a livelihood, homelessness is still a major, characteristic symptom of our times. One can be
homeless spiritually, too, if they can’t find their place
in the world. For this reason I
have felt closely acquainted with people who are homeless."
To the English-language reader, Kosztolányi is chiefly known as the author of the novels Skylark and Anna Édes. Yet his Complaints of a Poor Little Child is one of the best known books of 20th-century Hungarian poetry. In these poems, Kosztolányi captures the world of childhoodin its timelessness and sense of eternal beginning.
Distant from Asia, yet not in Europe. Moving away from the East towards the West, wary of the former, hopeful in the latter. (...) To the foreigner, Hungary appears a land of contradictions, a terra incognita with much that is recognizably European, but even more that remains beyond comprehension, just as an operetta bears some resemblance to real life, yet is light years distant from it.