Dubravko Ivančan (6 March 1931 - 29 January 1982)


Dubravko Ivančan was a Croatian writer, literary critic and translator. He was born in Krapina in 1931. He graduated Philosophy at the University of Zagreb and he spent three years on postgraduate studies in Germany and France.


Literary Work
In 1939, at the age of 8, he published some small children’s poems in Smilja but his first "serious" piece of literature appeared in 1952 in the first issue of the renowned journal “Circuits”. He wrote mostly poems and essays, reviews and criticism. He translated from German (Rainer Maria Rilke, Friedrich Hölderlin) and Japanese (haiku poetry - Matsuo Basho).

His poetry is characterized by a refined expression, variety of shapes, by brevity, directness and honesty. Nearly half of his work is haiku poetry which makes him one of the most important representatives of this genre in Croatia. Since 1999 the Open University in Krapina organizes each year an event that bears his name - Haiku Day "D. Ivančan”.

He died in Zagreb, on 29 January 1982.

More important collections: 
Free night (1957), Butterfly Wings (1964), Shimmer (1966), Songs along the way (1968), Always growing up the foamy tree of the fountain (1968), White Ship (1971), Amor (1971), Sea (1973), Grandma (1975), Childhood in Krapinčica (1976), Life in the country (1977), Global City (Paris sketches): haiku (1977) and Green Sky (1981), Christmas (2001).


Uvijek iznova raste

Pjenušavo stablo

bijelog vodoskoka.


    Growing up again and again

    the foamy tree

    of the white fountain.


Ležim u čamcu.


prelije zvijezdu.


    Laying in the boat.
    A wave
    overflows the star.


Kisa… nema obzora
Sve  je
more ili nebo.

   Rain … without horizon.
   Everything is
   the sea or the sky.


A selection of his haiku could be found here: