Jakub Řehák

Jakub Řehák

Poet, essayist. Winner of the Magnesia Litera for poetry (2013). His work was featured in an Italian anthology of contemporary new Czech poetry, Rapporti di Errore (2010). He was born in Uherské Hradiště on 26 March 1978.

Title Publisher Year Selected published translations Awards
Days Full of Falling Asleep (Dny plné usínání) Éditions Fra 2016
A Trap for Brigita (Past na Brigitu) Fra 2012  2013 Magnesia Litera – Poetry
The Best Czech Poems 2010 (Nejlepší české básně 2010) Host 2010
Light Between the Boards (Světla mezi prkny) Agite/Fra 2008
Days Full of Falling Asleep
Dny plné usínání
A Trap for Brigita
Past na Brigitu
The Best Czech Poems 2010
Nejlepší české básně 2010
Světla mezi prkny
Light Between the Boards
Světla mezi prkny
Award Year Country
Magnesia Litera – Poetry 2013 Česká republika
This is poetry which opens up gradually, which one enters into in a roundabout way. Poetry which knows how to snap its trap shut even when it is read repeatedly – and each time with the help of a different lure.
—Markéta Kittlová

He graduated from Zlín Film School, contributes to newspapers and magazines, and writes essays and reviews. He participated in selecting the Best Czech Poetry of the Year 2010 (Host, 2010) and compiling the poetry of Karel Urianek Beránek (Fra, 2012).

He first published his work in magazines and on the internet, and then in book form with Světla mezi prkny (Light Between the Boards, Fra, 2008), for which he was nominated for the Magnesia Litera and the Jiří Orten Award. “Women and books conceal worlds within themselves whose revelation affords us unprecedented delight. The closed nature of these worlds provokes an inconsolable longing to experience them and it awakens thoughts within us. It forces us to abandon ourselves and encounter the other. In both cases it is about the same journey: the detachment of the mind from the body,” writes Jan Havlíček in a review on iLiteratura.cz. In this way he captures the main themes of Řehák’s poetic debut – love (physicality) and books (spirituality). These are supplemented with internal, almost surrealistic descriptions – this is about visions, not about the sound of the words or the regular structure of verse.

The second collection came out after a gap of five years and is entitled Past na Brigitu (A Trap for Brigita, Fra, 2012). Prague is the backdrop to the narrator’s relationship with a girl called Brigita, which unfolds in a sort of reverse speech to her at the moment when the relationship is no longer working. As editor Markéta Kittlová writes, “This is poetry which opens up gradually, which one enters into in a roundabout way. Poetry which knows how to spring its trap, even on repeated reading – and each time with the help of a different lure.”

Notable awards
 2013 Magnesia Litera – Poetry
E: jakub.rehak@gmail.com
“A poem has become part of my life,”