“I’m walking towards You, Mystery...,” or what St. Francis says on the steep tip of the mountain
The article is an attempt to interpret The Stigmata of St. Francis — a poem by Tadeusz Miciński from the In the Darkness of the Stars cycle (1902) and expressing (in scholars’ view) a controversial version of Franciscanism of the Young Poland era. In it, the poet transforms the image of the Assisi legend of the advocate of nature and animals glorifying the Creator. The piece provokes a new reading of the complex dilemmas of the lyrical subject. St. Francis’ utterance on top of La Verna recreates the intense mental experiences of a tormented decadent although undoubtedly a man made happy by suffering caused by the stigmata. From the point of view of Young Poland Franciscanism the work is exceptional, it does not replicate its naive-popular, primitivist style. There is no doubt either that the work is a manifestation of a decadent crisis of culture as well as a reaction to the spleen of the Young Poland period and the lack of direction among the decadents. The final fragment of Miciński’s poem became the basis of Karol Szymanowski’s song entitled St. Francis speaks (published in 1925 and dedicated to the memory of Miciński).