Search results for "Sirkka Turkka"

Tutti frutti

20 November 2009 | In the news

finlandialogo_3The chair of the jury for the Finlandia Prize for Non-Fiction 2009, Professor Pekka Puska, compared choosing a winner to the dilemma of choosing between oranges and bananas. The jury found that among the entries were at least 20 or 30 books that could have gone on the final shortlist of six titles. More…

How to build a Finlandia Prize-winning novel

4 December 2009 | In the news


Antti Hyry

The Finlandia Prize for Fiction 2009, worth €30,000,  was awarded to Antti Hyry (born 1931) on 2nd December; his novel about building a stove, Uuni (‘The stove’, Otava), was chosen by the art historian and former director of the Finnish National Gallery, Tuula Arkio, from a shortlist of six. More…

Tapani Bagge: Maalla [In the country]

31 January 2011 | Mini reviews, Reviews

[In the country]
Kuvitus [ill. by]:  Hannamari Ruohonen
Helsinki: Tammi, 2010. 64 p.
ISBN 978-951-31-4748-8
€9.50, hardback

There have been plenty of books for beginning readers with action-packed plots full of breathtaking twists and turns. Fortunately there are still books that leave room for a more ‘easy does it’ reading style. One of them is this, the sixth title in Tapani Bagge’s series about a girl called Kaisa. Kaisa travels to the countryside with her father and her father’s partner Sirkka. Their journey is overshadowed by the death of Kaisa’s grandmother, and the little girl believes that nothing at her grandma’s place will ever be the same again. Bagge’s extensive work on this material is evident in his spare, finely tuned prose. He portrays the grieving girl’s differing shades of emotion beautifully. Kaisa believes that her grandma has changed into a butterfly following her death. So the butterfly fluttering around in the attic needs to be saved – but this of course has further-reaching consequences…. Hannamari Ruohonen’s black-and-white illustrations provide a lovely depiction of care and protection in the family.
Translated by Ruth Urbom

The house the seniors built

27 November 2009 | Reviews

Yours and mine: the common dining room

Yours and mine: the common dining room at Sprint

Maija Dahlström – Sirkka Minkkinen
Loppukiri. Vaihtoehtoista asumista seniori-iässä
[Sprint: alternative living for seniors]
Helsinki: WSOY, 2009. 232 p., ill.
ISBN 978-9510-4322-9
€ 32.90, paperback

‘Your elderly mother just told you she fell in the bathroom last night at 4 a.m. Now what?’ advertises the Visiting Nurse Service of New York in the New York Times. Aging people and their desire to live in their own homes is a pressing question around the world. People feel concern over their own living arrangements and those of their loved ones. Living arrangements somewhere between being in one’s own home or in a care facility are sought by many, but there are few of these options available. More…

A poet’s perspective

31 December 1986 | Archives online, Authors, Reviews

Aila Meriluoto. Photo: Pertti Nisonen

Aila Meriluoto. Photo: Pertti Nisonen

When Aila Meriluoto burst on to the world of Finnish poetry 40 years ago in the autumn of 1946 she was at once hailed as a youthful prodigy. Praised lavishly by the leading critics, the 22-year-old poet’s first collection, Lasimaalaus, sold in phenomenal numbers: in a couple of years it went through eight editions, or 25,000 copies, which in Finland is still a record figure. Today total sales are well over 30,000.

Two poems attracted particular attention. One was Kivinen Jumala (‘God of stone’), a poem of defiance unleashed by the experience of wartime bombing, in which God is portrayed as having changed into a stone statue, and people as having hardened correspondingly. It was the first reaction of the younger generation to the war – abusive, strong and inevitable, the proclamation of the death of the kind, just God.

The other central poem of the collection was Lasimaalaus (‘Stained glass’) from which the collection took its name: a taut post-symbolist vision and a dazzling synthesis of the oneness of the world. Baudelaire, master of correspondances, might well have been satisfied with it. More…


31 December 1986 | Archives online, Fiction, poetry

Introduction by Kai Laitinen

Evening Mood

It’s widening:
an evening like a sigh –
languidly spreading across the land.
The tree’s unclothing
its branches of their colours, darkening.
As if something somewhere
were ringing and ringing –
a song straying like an orphan.
The words seem
something I’ve heard:
‘only a shadow –
only a shadow of a dream’

It’s slipping away. It’s dwindling.
Everything – everything – I’ve been given
I’ll give away. More…

Dreaming a dream: the poetry of Helvi Juvonen

17 May 2010 | Authors, Reviews

Helvi Juvonen (1950s). Photo: WSOY

The work of Helvi Juvonen is beguilingly strange; intense, eccentric, askew, it sees the world afresh. It charms by means of fairy-tale motifs and apparent nonsense; but it also offers piercing insights into suffering, loneliness, and alienation.

It combines the haunting, elliptical quality of the verse of Emily Dickinson, the nineteenth-century American poet-recluse, with the sharp, fresh imagery of the Finnish 1950s modernist Eeva-Liisa Manner. Its religiosity is complex and unsettling, its humour sly and bizarre. Hard to categorise, Juvonen is both traditional and modern: a sceptical believer, a quiet transgressor.

Juvonen (1919–1959) was known as ‘Nalle’ (teddy) as a child, and her fondness for and identification with animals emerges often her poems:

The mole sleeps,
dreaming a dream, darkly soft

The poetry is also characterised by a fairy-tale logic and a kind of childlike anarchy; a goblin shares her joy with a bumblebee, a tapir talks to a stone. There is a mischievous, surreal streak in the work. The world is anthropomorphised, as in a fairy tale; the poet addresses a singing kettle.

Juvonen in fact wrote fairy tales, not published in her lifetime, like that of Little Bear dreaming as she hibernates. ‘Bon bons, bon bons,’ she says repeatedly, this stream of sound constituting joyous nonsense, an acknowledgement of the miraculous freshness of the world. More…