Marijo Glavaš

- Croatia -

Marijo Glavaš (Split, 1986) published three books of poetry, GrAD, Ciklona and Permutacije (C/Shi/Ty, Cyclone, and Permutations), and a novel Libreto za mrtve kitove (The Libretto for Dead Whales). His book reviews and interviews with Croatian and foreign writers were published at literary web portal Moderna Vremena. He or­ganized and hosted a literary show called Bookara in Split. At Croatian Radio-Television Split, he edited and hosted a literature program called Klin se knjigom izbija and he also hosted and developed the TV program called Stimulator. He collabo­rated with Split based organization KURS on their writers-in-residence program. He is the member of Croatian Writers’ Society and he served at the Council for Books, Publishing and Library Activi­ties at the City of Split. 

Marijo Glavaš, born in a coastal city of Split in 1986, belongs to the generation of the already recognized younger Croatian poets; the ones who published their first full-length poetry books in the beginning of the decade that has just left us. After debuting with a novel Libreto za mrtve kitove (The Libretto for Dead Whales) in 2009 – a direction just the opposite of the one that majority of the young poets take – he continued with a sequel of poetry volumes, namely: Ciklona (Cyclone, in 2012, awarded as a manuscript with the post-Yugoslav, Montenegro based “Young Ratković” prize for the best manuscript of a young author), GrAD (C/Shi/Ty, as well in 2012, awarded as a manuscript with “Na vrh jezika” prize for the best young author’s collection), and Permutacije (Permutations, 2017). 

            Glavaš is an author with a broad interest, displaying high diversity in his writings. Up to date he has been publishing, more or less frequently, also short fiction, literary criticism, essays and interviews, mostly with fellow writers. Occasionally he was also engaged in storytelling. Glavaš is a figure who connects and constantly breeds new ideas, being one of the pillars of the small but sunny, independent literature-bound scene in his hometown, where he’s currently living. He has started and hosted a TV-show named Stimulator at the local TV station, a radio broadcast Klin se knjigom izbija, as well as developed and hosted a man-to-man literary talk-show Bookara, presenting both young and already established authors. At the same time he’s been one of the forces helping to manage Split based, Traduki funded residential program Marko Marulić, which welcomes writers and translators from all over the world. Not to be mentioning that he has simultaneously worked as a tourist guide, played a guitar in a rock band, and currently is an employee of a large bank, as well as a young father. In whatever he publicly does, Glavaš does not neglect the audience, he avoids elitism, tries to be clear and to the point and employs a fair dose of humor. 

            Well measured humor, as well as a dose of “relaxedness” remains a constant of his poetic work too. This, however, is to be taken conditionally: his topics are often everything but bright and sunny. Besides the omnipresent “everyday paranoias”, Glavaš also addresses themes such as man-female relations (often from the “genuinely feminist” position), the Holocaust, the migrant crisis and the never ending shitstorm of the Croatian social, political and economic reality. He smoothly shifts the registers from the colloquial to the lyrical and confessional, sometimes choosing long verses of complex syntax, with carefully constructed rhythm, within the line itself, as well as on the level of a poem. On the other hand, he enjoys weaving a small, unpretentious odes to the objects surrounding us all – avocados, medusas, pots, the color of white. The top Croatian literary editor, Kruno Lokotar, writes: “the extraordinary quality of the book GrAD should be obvious to anyone able to read, in case he or she is adequately equipped for this poetical adventure, which stretches from the personal speleology all the way to the alpinism of the spirit.” 

            Glavaš’s work has been published in magazines and web-portals in the region, as well as translated to a couple of European languages. He has traveled to a couple of international poetry festivals, and gave readings across the ex-Yugoslav cultural space. He’s been one of the seven poets presented in an anthology of younger Croatian poetry recently published in English language: The edge of a page – New poetry in Croatia, generation 2010+