- Romani poetry has developed from song. Some verse was written during the early years of the Soviet Union before the use of the Romani language was discouraged. Aleksandr German and O. Pankova were the outstanding names in a repertoire that followed the state policy in seeing nomadism as romantic but outdated. Poetry has become a common literary form only since 1945. Well-known poets include Rajko DjuriC, Aleksandr Belugins (Leksa Manus), and Bronislawa Wajs. A number of anthologies are listed in the bibliography.Increased settlement and educational opportunities have also produced poets who use the majority language of the country where they live. They include Dezider Banga (Slovakia), Károly Bari and Jószef Kovacs (Hungary), Slobodan Berberski (Serbia), Luminita Mihai Cioaba (Romania), and Sandra Jayat (France), together with many in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). Their themes often mirror those of non-Gypsy poets.In the former Yugoslavia, where radio and periodicals have fostered the language, a circle of poets in Skopje and its satellite town of Shuto Orizari developed alongside a flourishing theater in Romani. The lyric writers of Kosovo are better known. Characteristic of this school is the creation of neologisms from Romani roots rather than using loan words from Serbo-Croat or Albanian. From the score of writers in the province, mention can be made of three: Dzevad Gasi, Iliaz Saban, and Ismet Jasarevic. The latter, in his rhymed autobiographical poem "Te dzanel thaarako ternipe" [That Tomorrow's Youth Might Know], tells of his hard struggle against poverty and illness.On a lesser scale than in the 1920s and 1930s, the CIS has seen a small revival with Nikolai Satkievitch and Djura Makhotin. Gypsy poets in Hungary have seen their work appear in a number of anthologies and in magazines, one of the earliest being Rom Som (I Am a Rom). Jószef Choli Daróczi takes his inspiration from Berthold Brecht and the Hungarian poet Jószef Attila. Ervin Karsai, on the other hand, is best known for his children's poems. Characteristic of Czech and Slovak writers was that they had often been manual workers with little formal schooling. Worthy of mention are Bartolomej Daniel, Tera Fabianová, Frantisek Demeter, Elena Lacková, Vojtech Fabian, and Ondrej Pesta.Vittorio Pasquale writes in the less used Sinti dialect and, together with Rasim Sejdic, has been published in Italy. There are other occasional poets such as Matéo Maximoff (better known for his novels), Dimiter Golemanov (primarily a composer of songs), and Rosa Taikon (an artist in metal).An outstanding achievement of post-1945 Romani poetry is the full-length verse ballad Tari thaj Zerfi [Tari and Zerfi] by the Lovari dialect writer Wladyslaw Jakowicz, recounting the story of two lovers. It has been published in Sweden with a glossary in Kalderash, thus making it accessible to a broader circle of readers. The poets writing in Romani are part of the wider European tradition and important figures in Gypsy cultural life.See also Literature, Gypsy.
Historical dictionary of the Gypsies . Donald Kenrick.