This year, the Térey Könyvünnep (Térey Book Memorial) will be held for the fourth time between 12th-18th September, and this time, it is even more special: on the 53rd anniversary of his birth, the Térey Book Corner was opened, where visitors can view the writer’s artefacts. Despite the weather, which suddenly turned autumnal after unseasonal warm days, many people gathered for this “beautiful and sad” event, as Deputy Mayor of Debrecen István Puskás described it.
The commemoration started with the words of László Pósán, Chairman of the Cultural Committee of the National Assembly, who said that Debrecen has always been open to new ideas but that it also strongly preserves its traditions. “Perhaps this attitude is not accidental because, without the old values, there are no new ones. János Térey, an emblematic figure of Debrecen’s identity, represented this in his works. This occasion is also a symbol of the fact that he is still with us today because we remember him, and I hope that this will be the case for a very long time”, concluded the politician.
István Puskás, Deputy Mayor of Debrecen responsible for culture, said that today is a special day of celebration because it shows the work of a project that has been going on for months. He said that it is a great honour for us to host such a project in our city. “It is an opportunity not only to discover a writer’s oeuvre but also to gain an insight into the world of his legacy and his personality,” he stressed.
“János Térey fought for Debrecen to be what it should be in the present. He did not idealise the city; he lived it. He went away looking back at Debrecen, and now we are looking back at him”, Director General of the Petőfi Literary Museum Szilárd Demeter, said who also pointed out that in János Térey’s Boldogh-ház, Kétmalom Street we can read the following lines: “My whole life is a struggle to not leave everything behind.”
At the poet’s birthplace in Kétmalom Street, János Mercs recited the poems of János Térey, and at the end of the commemoration István Puskás, Szilárd Demeter and the mayor of Vámospércs, Andrea Ménes, and Béla Lóránt Kovács, director of the Méliusz Juhász Péter Library, laid wreaths.
Afterwards, the half a hundred or so commemorators marched to Nyíl Street for the opening of the Térey Book Corner. Entering the building was like entering the poet’s life, thanks in large part to Artemis Harmath, the widow of János Térey, and the way the city of Debrecen has responded to his legacy. Priceless manuscripts, letters, prizes, thousands of volumes, old furniture and personal objects bring to life the writer’s figure in one of his favourite childhood haunts, where he used to come so often to read.
Source and photo credit: debrecen.hu