Today I received some very sad news from Michele Cahill, the editor of Mascara Poetry : 'Some of you may know that on Sunday morning our dear friend, Tatjana Lukic, who had been suffering from a brain tumour, passed away, peacefully.'
Tatjana Lukic (foto by Karen Bachelor, 2003)
Tatjana Lukic was born in Croatia. She graduated from the University of Sarajevo in philosophy and sociology, and worked as a college teacher, poetry editor and sociologist/researcher in Bosnia, Croatia, Serbia and the Czech Republic. In the 1980s she published four books of poetry in the former Yugoslavia, and won several national awards. In 1992 she arrived in Australia with her young family as a refugee from the Balkans war. On her arrival here she did not speak English and described writing poetry in English as "one of the hardest and most challenging things" she had accomplished. Tatjana lived in Canberra where she worked as a researcher for a government department, and from where she wrote and translated poetry. Her publications include (Poetry Collections in Croatian): Saslusanje (Nolit, Belgrade, 1988), Izbor (Mali katalog poezije, Osijek, 1985), Sta sutim (Svjetlost, Sarajevo, 1984), Povijedanje, zacetak poja (Matica srpska, Novi Sad, 1981). Her poems have been published in Thylazine, Famous Reporter, Poetry Without Borders, Gangway and many others. Her book la, la, la , written with the assistance of a grant from the Literature Board of the Australia Council, is forthcoming with Five Islands press in 2009.
I corresponded with Tatjana and knew her as a gracious, enthusiastic, frank, witty and bright poet. Her presence on various online poetry discussion lists was refreshing and always stimulating. With other poets in the former Yugoslavia, she was compiling a bilingual collection of Australian poetry.
25 August 1959 - 10 August 2008
Loving mother of Jelena,
Much loved by Jelena, Jovan
and her many friends.
A Service for Tatjana will be held
at 11am, on Monday, 18 August, 2008
in the Chapel at Woden Cemetery.
Burial will follow in the Lawn Section.
After the funeral, Tatjana's friends are welcome to gather for light refreshments at the Common Room at University House at the Australian National University (Liversidge St, Acton).