The fates Usov

Vlastimil Artur Polak

knihaBorn in Usov in 1914, this poet and prose writer was one of the few Usov Jews who survived imprisonment in a concentration camp. Polak wrote his humanistic and anti nationalistic works in German. The most famous of his works is a compilation of over 200 poems entitled, "Die Stadt der schwarzen Tore" (The Town of Black Towers), from the period 1938-1947.

Here we can find stories of life during the occupation, literary portraits of people from the transports and Terezin, and thoughts on love and peace. The war ended when Polak was in Terezin and he got an award for his anti Nazi resistance. His small compilation of poems was published in Vienna in 1975 and "Der erloschene Leuchter"(The Snuffed Candelabra) was released in Olomouc in 2003. He also collected old Jewish tales from Usov, which were published in 1996 under the title, "Bílá paní z ghetta" (A White Lady From the Ghetto).
Before the war Polak wrote satirical articles against local Nazis for the newsletter Distel (Thistle), which he published with his Czech and German friends in Usov. Hugo Silbersky, a young artist from Lostice, did some illustrations for his articles. After 1945 V. A. Polak worked and lived in Olomouc (d. 1990). A wife of the artist Mrs. Olga Polakova translated most of his writings to Czech.

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