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a candle for my son!

Ana Blandiana, Poetess

Ana Blandiana

Personal Site

Born: March 25, 1942, in Timisoara, daughter of Gheorghe and Ana Coman of Murani commune, Timis county

The real name of the poetess was Otilia-Valeria Coman. Poetess' mother, Otilia, was born in the village Blandiana, Alba County. In 1959, the poetess adopted this name as her literary pseudonym. Poetess' father, George Coman, a bachelor in law and theology, was a Greek-Catholic priest, working also as a high school teacher. At the orders of the Soviets, the communist regime in Romania attempted, after 1950, to force the Greek-Catholic priests to abjure, in order to pass to the Orthodox religion. Many of them, who refused, were abusively imprisoned and served for many years. This was the case of poetess' father as well. He was released in 1964 and died shortly after, in a tragic accident.

Married to Romulus Rusan, writer, in 1960


  • 1949-1952 - Primary School in "Viilor" Quartal, Oradea
  • 1952-1959 - High school in Oradea (Former "Oltea Doamna" High School)
  • 1963-1967 - Graduate of the Faculty of Philology in Cluj-Napoca University

Literary Career

  • Debut in 1959, in Tribuna, Cluj-Napoca, signing for the first time Ana Blandiana, as well as in the anthology 30 de poeti tineri (30 Young Poets)
  • 1963 - after an interdiction of four years, another debut in the revue "Contemporanul", directed by George Ivascu
  • 1964 - Editorial debut with the poem thin booklet Persoana intaia plural (First Person at Plural), with a Forward written by Nicolae Manolescu
  • Imposes herself with Calcaiul vulnerabil (Achiless' Heel, 1966) and A treia taina ((Third Secret, 1969)
  • 1966 - First participation to an International Poesy Contest in Lathi, Finland
  • 1967 - establishes her residence in Bucharest
  • 1967-1968 - editor at Viata studenteasca revue
  • 1968-1975 - editor at Amfiteatru revue
  • 1969 - Two TV Films of Poesy, together with Andrei Serban and the actors Irina Petrescu, Mariana Mihut and Florian Pittis
  • 1975-1977 - Librarian at the Institute of Fine Arts, Bucharest
  • 1976 - first publication in French in "Anthologie du Club des Počtes", Paris
  • 1978 - participates at the First International Festival of Poesy in Paris
  • In the late 80s, assuming risks of reprisals of the communist regime, started writing protesting poems, as an answer to the aberrations of the communist regime in Romania, in general, and of the ceausescu's in particular
  • After the revolution, enters the political life, fighting for truth and communist sequels elimination. The creation remains, as in other cases, on the second level. Nevertheless, publishes "Arhitectura valurilor" (Architecture of Waves, 1990), 100 de poeme (100 Poems, 1991), Sertarul cu aplauze (The Drawer with Applauses, prose, 1992)
  • Published:
    • 16 volumes of poems, among which:
      - Calcâiul vulnerabil, (Achilles' Heel, 1966
      - A treia taina, (Third Secret), 1969
      - 50 de poeme, (50 Poems), 1970
      - Octombrie, Noiembrie, Decembrie, (October, November, December), 1972
      - Întâmplari din gradina mea (Stories from My Garden), 1980
      - Ora de nisip (Sand Hour), 1984
      - Întâmplari de pe strada mea (Stories in My Street), 1988
      - 100 de poeme (100 Poems), 1991
      - In dimineata de dupa moarte (Next Morning After Death), 1996
      - La cules îngeri (Gathering Angels), 1997
      Cartea alba a lui Arpagic (Arpagic' s White Book), 1998
    • 6 books of essays
    • 4 books in prose
  • Translated in more than 16 languages

The Memorial of the Victims of Communism and of the Resistance

  • initiated in 1993 by the President of the Civic Alliance, Ana Blandiana, together with Romulus Rusan and an important group of historians, architects and designers
  • in 1995, the Council of Europe drew up a report-study and took the Memorial under its aegis
  • in 1998, The Council of Europe designated the Sighet Memorial as one of the main memorial sites of the continent, alongside the Auschwitz Museum and the Peace Memorial in Normandy


  • Member of the Writers Union of Romania
  • Member of the European Academy of Poets
  • Chairman of the Romanian PEN-CLUB, after its re-establishment  in 1990
  • Member of the Academy of Poetry "Stéphane Mallarmé"
  • Member of the World Academy of Poetry, UNESCO
  • 1994 - Founder and leader of the Civic Alliance Foundation, a Romanian non-party movement, whose aim is to annihilate the tragic consequences of more than 50 years of communism in Romania
  • Founder and executive director of the Memorial of the Victims of Communism and of the Resistance, Sighet, Romania

Round Table: "Gheorghe I. Bratianu : 50 years after his death"
April 17
, 2003, Bucharest

Prizes and Awards

  • 1969 - Prize for Poetry, granted by the Romanian Writers Union

  • 1970 - Prize of the Romanian Academy

  • 1980 - Prize of Literature for Children, awarded by the Romanian Writers Union

  • 1982 - Gottfried von Herder International Prize

  • 1982 - Prize for Prose, awarded by Bucharest Writers Association

  • 1997 - National Prize "Mihai Eminescu" for Poetry

  • 1998 - Prize of Literature for Children, Bucharest

  • 1999 - Prize "Speranta" (Hope), granted by Timisoara Society

  • 2000 - Prize for Poetry, granted by the Romania Writers Union

  • 2000 - Prize for Poetry, granted by the revue "Cuvantul" (The Word)

  • 2002 - Prize "Opera Omnia", awarded by  the Writers Union of Romania for the whole literary activity

  • 2002 - International Prize "Vilenica", granted by the International  Jury of the Festival of Literature, Slovenia

  • 2003 - Prize awarded by the revue "Poesis"

  • 2005 - International Prize "Giuseppe Acerbi" for Poetry, Italy

  • 2005 - International Prize "Camaiore", Italy

  •  2007 - Grand Prize for Literature, granted on the occasion of the XXVII Edition of the International Festival "Lucian Blaga"


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