While his witty, ironic parables were not directly critical of the Communist regime, Romanians used to a culture of double-speak could read other meanings in Sorescu's playful mockery of the human condition. All this time he was also writing these 'secret poems' which he didn't dare publish until after the fall of Ceausescu.
Marin Sorescu (1936-96) was a cheerfully melancholic comic genius, and one of the most original voices in Romanian literature. His mischievous poetry and satirical plays earned him great popularity during the Communist era. Later - like a hapless character from one of his absurdist dramas - the peasant-born people's poet was made Minister of Culture.
Translated by Hilde Ottschofski and John Hartley Williams.