Vytautas Macernis
Vytautas Mačernis was a Lithuania
Lithuania , officially the Republic of Lithuania is a country in Northern Europe, the biggest of the three Baltic states. It is situated along the southeastern shore of the Baltic Sea, whereby to the west lie Sweden and Denmark...

n existentialist poet.


He was born in the village of Šarnelė (now in Plungė district municipality
Plunge district municipality
Plungė district municipality is one of 60 municipalities in Lithuania.-Tourism and pilgrimage:Major tourist attraction is Lake Plateliai and nearby town Plateliai...

), where he wrote most of his poems. His grandmother, who died in 1934, appears in most of his poems as a warm and pleasant memory. In his childhood Mačernis was very withdrawn and thoughtful.

Vytautas Mačernis studied English language and literature in Kaunas
Kaunas is the second-largest city in Lithuania and has historically been a leading centre of Lithuanian economic, academic, and cultural life. Kaunas was the biggest city and the center of a powiat in Trakai Voivodeship of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania since 1413. During Russian Empire occupation...

 and philosophy at the University of Vilnius. The poet had died on October 7, 1944 in Žemaičių Kalvarija
Žemaiciu Kalvarija
Žemaičių Kalvarija is a small town in Plungė district municipality, Lithuania. It is known as a major site for Catholic pilgrimage....

, hit by a stray bullet.


Mačernis dedicated his short life for searching the purpose of human's life. His first poem was published in 1936, the last one – in October 1944. He has written sonnet
A sonnet is one of several forms of poetry that originate in Europe, mainly Provence and Italy. A sonnet commonly has 14 lines. The term "sonnet" derives from the Occitan word sonet and the Italian word sonetto, both meaning "little song" or "little sound"...

s, visions, triolet
A triolet is a three stanza poem of eight lines. Its rhyme scheme is ABaAabAB and often all lines are in iambic tetrameter: the first, fourth and seventh lines are identical, as are the second and final lines, thereby making the initial and final couplets identical as well.-Examples:The form...

s, songs and short aphoristic
An aphorism is an original thought, spoken or written in a laconic and memorable form.The term was first used in the Aphorisms of Hippocrates...


A sensitive person, Mačernis was affected by such calamities as World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 and the subsequent Soviet and Nazi occupations. His poems were now full of gloom and dark colours.

The only cycle he could finish was "Vizijos" (Visions, 1939–1942). He had also created 81 sonnets of the cycle "Metai" (Years) out of the 96 planned, 14 "Songs of Myself", as well as the prologue of the poem "Žmogaus apnuoginta širdis" (Person's Denuded Heart).

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