Tomasz Ro?ycki, a contemporary Polish poet and translator, was born in 1970 in Opole (Silesia, the southwestern part of Poland, a region that bears the mark of a distinct mixture of cultures). Ro?ycki studied Romance languages at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow. Alongside his work he translated poetry from French, publishing a translation of Stephane Mallarme's Un coup de des jamais n'abolira le hasard in 2005. He is the author of five collections of poems to great acclaim: Vaterland (1997), Anima (1999), Chata umaita (2001), ?wiat i anty?wiat (2003), and the long epic poem Dwana?cie stacji (2004), for which he was awarded the Ko?cielski Prize, the most prestigious literary prize for Polish writers under forty. He thus joined the ranks of Poland's most important writers, among them S?awomir Mro?ek, Zbigniew Herbert, and Adam Zagajewski. The long, tragic-comic poem tells the story of a family gathering from the perspective of a third generation representative, post World War II. He gathers together all the members of his family who were expelled from Poland's eastern regions half a century ago with the aim of revisiting their place of origin and of seeking out the church bells buried in 1945. The poem, compared by critics to the national epic Pan Tadeusz, moved the jury with its "humorous distance, but also warmly depicted praise, of the province and of family tradition." In the same year, a collection of Ro?ycki's first three volumes appeared under the title Wiersze (Poems, 2004). His latest work, Kolonie (2007), brings together seventy-seven poems whose exotic titles such as "Tawerna w porcie" (Tavern at the Harbour), "Ziemia Ognista" (Fire Earth), and "Cynamon i go?dziki" (Cinnamon and Cloves) present a striking contrast to the depictions of everyday Polish country life and the melancholic thoughts they contain. His work has been translated into numerous European languages, and The Forgotten Keys: Selected Poetry of Tomasz Ro?ycki and Colonies (translated by Mira Rosenthal) have just been published by Zephyr Press in USA. His latest books are Ksi?ga obrotow in 2010 and Bestiarium in 2012. His poems have been translated and published in Germany, France, Italy, Great Britain, and Slovakia. He has received the Krzysztof Kamil Baczy?ski Prize, the Joseph Brodski Prize from Zeszyty Literackie, and has been nominated twice for the Nike Prize, Poland's most important literary award. He has participated in the Literaturexpress Europa 2000, the Krakow-Houston Summer Poetry Seminar (2004), and other international poetry festivals. He lives in his native city Opole with his wife and two children.