Buraukin saw his last book two days before death (photo)
Henadz Buraukin spent a few months struggling with cancer. He appeared in public for the last time in January – at Pavel Sevyarynets and Volha Shylak’s weeding in Cathedral of Saint Virgin Mary.
He wished the couple happiness and underwent an operation a few days later. Then he spent some time in the intensive care, got better and was discharged. However, he spent a few weeks in coma later. Henadz Buraukin spent his last days at home with his wife, children and grandchildren.
His friend, philologist Syarhei Shapran visited him every day. Buraukin asked Shapran to ask him as many questions as he liked and his answers were recorded to preserve as many details and memories as possible.
Henadz Buraukin gave a few notebooks with the verses he had written in the previous few years about 10 days ago. The last verse was written on December 21, 2013. Buraukin did not write anything else after that. The poet’s last wish was to see the verses published. And Shapran did the impossible: he deciphered the poet’s illegible handwriting (the poet always used a pencil for writing verses) and set the verses up in type.
Poet Uladzimir Nyaklyayeu edited the book. Painter Zmitser Hunyanets made the cover, Kastus Lisetski made the book up and publisher Henadz Vinyarksi put off all the other work and published the book.
Pavel Berahovich sponsored the process.
The miracle was worked two days ago – Henadz Buraukin saw his new book Talk to Stars only 7 days after he had mentioned his last wish. Only one (!) copy was printed especially for the poet. The rest of the copies are being printed now.
Henadz Buraukin spent a lot of time in the position of an official. He always said that it had prevented him from finishing many verses. His last desire was to stay a poet.
Farewell, dear poet!
Henadz Buraukin was born on August 28, 1936 in the village of Shulyatsina, Rasony District. He graduated from the BSU faculty of journalism in 1959. Buraukin worked for the magazine Belarus’ Communist, newspaper Literature and Art, was a Pravda reporter in Belarus and the editor-in-chief of the magazine Maladost.
He was the head of the BSSR State Radio and Television in 1978-1990 but was sacked from the position for his democratic views and became a diplomat. He was a permanent representative of Belarus in the UN and deputy Minister of Culture and Press, headed the Belarusian Language Association and was a member of the PEN-centre.
Henadz Buraukin’s voice.
Verse Although the story is not over… (from Hleb Labadzenka’s blog)
Video: Henadz Buraukin describes his work in Pravda
Henadz Buraukin as a child.
With Mom, Dad and sister.
Henadz Buraukin (fourth person standing on the right) meets Kolas. The first person on the left in the upper row is Nil Hilevich.
Student Henadz Buraukin.
With children – Alyaksei and Svyatlana.
With Arkadz Kulyashou.
With Yauhen Yeutushenka.
With Pyotr Masherau.
With Iosif Syaredzich and Vasil Bykau.
From the left: sculptor Henadz Buralkin, Uladzimir Mulyavin, Henadz Buraukin and sculptor Stanislau Larchanka in New York.
With grandchildren – Masha and Ivan.
With Stanilsau Shushkevich.
With Vasil Bykau (in the centre). Vasil Buraukin was Bykau’s friend until the writer’s death. Ryhor Baradulin is sitting on the right. All the three have already passed away. Photo: Syarhei Shapran, 2003.
At his school in Polatsk. Photo: Hleb Labadzenka.
Near his school in Polatsk. Photo: Hleb Labazdenka.
At his father’s grave. Photo: Hleb Labadzenka.
With his mother and sister. Buraukin’s mother Feodosiya Yahorauna died at the age of 101 a few months ago. Photo: Hleb Labazdenka.
In a forest with friends.
Henadz and Yuliya Buraukin spent 55 years together. Photo: Syarhei Shapran.
Writer Ales Masarenka (on the right) saved Buraukin during a heart attack in 2006. It happened during a trial aimed against the Union of Writers. Photo: Hleb Labazdenka.
Most verses were written here, in the summer house in Kryzhouka. Photo: Hleb Labazdenka.
The whole family together.
In Kryzhouka. Photo: Hleb Labazdenka.
In Aksakovshchina hospital. Photo: Hleb Labazdenka.