Harry Martinson (H.) ganhou o Prémio Nobel da Literatura em 1974, “for writings that catch the dewdrop and reflect the cosmos“.
Também foi agraciado nesse ano outro autor sueco: Eyvind Johnson.
Como H. era amigo deste outro nobelizado e ambos eram membros há muito tempo da Academia Sueca, a qual debate e determina quem vence o Prémio Nobel, gerou-se uma polémica nos “media” insinuando corrupção.
Em 1978, quatro anos após lhe ter sido atribuído o Nobel, deprimido e desgastado com as ofensas a que foi sujeito, H. comete suicídio abrindo o estômago com uma tesoura.
«With their round dance the electrons spin
chrysalises of that which abides,
the inmost cocoons
which do not open of their own accord
but are of that which abides.
There it is not a matter of hatching out.
There it is a matter of tending and protecting
the metamorphoses of the inmost
the innermost playing of women in dance.»
– “The Electrons”, in “Dikter om ljus och mörker” (“Poems of Light and Darkness”), 1971, translated by Stephen Klass.
«Nature’s laws are already on the way
to stand us all against the wall.
That wall is law’s own nature.
It is missing an evangel.
That great trouble all of us must share.
Then it will be possible to bear.
The great trouble is to take great trouble.
That is what all of us must learn.
Amid all shoulds and should have beens
there is one must for all.
All must learn to take great trouble with the world.
Now that man has gotten power enough
to bring about the trouble of the world
the time is now
to heal the trouble of the world in time
before all nature has become
everybody’s troubled child.
This is called taking trouble in time.
which sees in time to what it sees».
– “The Great Trouble”, in “Dikter om ljus och mörker” (“Poems of Light and Darkness”), 1971, translated by Stephen Klass and Carolyn Skantz.
Drawings also by H.