RADICO ERGO SUM, HOMO RADIX, FELIX IN SILVIS
TRANSLATIONS IN OTHER LINGUISTIC AND CULTURAL CONTEXTS
«Tiziano Fratus is a passionate poet with a clear, distinct voice and a keen awareness that history opens the door of our future. We have much to learn from these engaged and engaging poems, much for which to be genuinely grateful» Sam Hamill
«One of the most original and important Italian nature writers and poets, Tiziano Fratus is also something more: he is a “tree-seeker” and a philosopher […] Elaborating an imaginative anthropology of woods in which roots, landscape, sounds, and time converge in his notion of “dendrosophy”, a theory of arboreal wisdom and an art of living, Fratus follows the trees in the forests of the world» Serenella Iovino – University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
«Tiziano Fratus is a storyteller, and a very compassionate one at that. His books, although structured as collections of poems, have the narrative interest and scale of novel. He has an uncanny, instinctive way of enetering other lives, and this is what gives his writing its amazing detail» Mani Rao – University of Nevada
«With its intellectual precision and astute observations of contemporary society, Fratus’ work represents some of the most important aspects of ecopoetics» Maggie Wang, Oxford University Poetry Society / Versopolis
«He found his rootedness – as Homo Radix, or Rootman – in poetry. His verses, laid out as shape poems, or concrete poems, or even tree poems, are the result of a practice of “dendrosophy”, a Zen-like meditation in nature» Trees in Literatures and The Arts. Humanarboreal Perspectives in the Anthropocene
Tiziano Fratus (Bergamo, 1975) is a dendrosopher, a treeseker, a silvan-zen practicer, a poet and an author published by Italian leader and indipendent publishing houses. He cultivates writing, searching, meditating and walking thought Ancient Forests and meeting with Monumental Trees. His maxims are in latin: Radico ergo sum, Felix in silvis, Zen atque natura matres sunt.
Fratus grew up breathing into North Italian Landscapes, the Great Plain and Mountains. When his Natural Family has been dissolved he began to travel. In California he met the Eternal Sequoias and touched the Silent Woods of Conifers, coining the concept of “Homo Radix“ (Rootman), the intuition of “Bosco itinerante” (Wandering Woods or Wandering Forest), cultivating the discipline of “Dendrosophia” (Dendrosophy).
Taking inspiration by what in music is called “mystic minimalism” – Alan Hovhaness, John Tavener or Arvo Part – Fratus nurtures a personal form of zen meditation in forest (Silvozen or Woods-Buddism), founding a least wandering “Ne-an”, or Roots Hermitage.
Along twenty years he has published a Wide Forest of Words, a large sylvanbook (in italian, silvario) embracing travelogues, meditation notebooks, novels, collections of poems – some by Italian leader publishing houses, some by indipendent ones. Among them: the novel Ogni albero è un poeta (Every Tree is a Poet – Mondadori), the guide Manuale del perfetto cercatore d’alberi (Handbook for a Perfect Tree Seeker – Feltrinelli), the explorations Giona delle sequoie (Jonas of the Sequoias – Bompiani) and I giganti silenziosi (The Silent Giants – Bompiani), the Trilogia delle Bocche Monumentali / Trilogy of Monumental Mouths (L’Italia è un bosco / Italy is a Wood, Il libro delle foreste scolpite / The Book of Carved Forests, L’Italia è un giardino / Italy is a Garden – Editori Laterza), the Diptych of Cloud Trees (Il sussurro degli alberi / The Whispering of Trees, Il sole che nessuno vede / The Sun which Nobody sees – Ediciclo). Last books: Interrestràre. Quaderno di meditazioni (Interrestràre. A notebook of meditations – Lindau), Sogni di un disegnatore di fiori di ciliegio (Cherry Flowers Sketcher’s Dream – Aboca); Sutra degli alberi, a poem and three notebooks (Sutra of the Trees – Edizioni dell’Eremo). Forthcoming: Alberi Millenari d’Italia (Millennial Italian Trees – Gribaudo Feltrinelli).
His poems have been translated into ten languages and published in twenty countries while his photography has shown in solo exhibitions. Fratus is a columnist for newspapers – La Stampa, La Repubblica, Il Manifesto, La Verità – and the voice of a radio program, Nova Silva Philosophica. He lives in a little house in the countryside with his long time partner and a dozen of cats.
TO BE A ROOTMAN
Unveiling a new continent sewn between bark and paper
«I am a root-man. I am a man who has moved around in order to grow and forget his first set of roots. I am a man who has uprooted himself and has wandered around until he found new roots. I’m a man who has stopped in order to move ahead again. A man who has set down new roots. I’m a man who has woken up as a tree with leaves treeing themselves in the breath of the wind, picking up stories carried and conveyed by other creatures. I am a root man who finds joy and peace in his new patch. I am a man who has found his roots by travelling the world. A man constantly seeking roots. I’m a root man who circulates and attempts to establish connections and knowledge though the elements of nature, the landscape and the environment. I’m a man who turns himself into more and more of a tree in a landscape of trees that become more and more man-like. I am a root man who can barely tolerate urban pollution, its confusion, its man-races and the psychological pollution that reduces every form of knowledge to that of utility. Or worse still, to that of excellence and the establishment of a new aristocracy. I’m a man who has learnt to listen to trees, and I’m not in the least bit ashamed of this. After all, every poet is destined to turn himself into a tree. I am a root man and these notes are my acorns, my racemes, my cones, my grains» From Homo Radix (2010)
A ROOTY ZEN PRACTICER IN WOODS
«Nature and Zen are a ceaseless and constant falling in love, they are a coming back in being children every evening, as soon as you put your head on your pillow, and every morning as soon as your eyes are wide open and you see the sunlight as if it were your first time, though with awareness of the passing seasons» From Sutra of Trees (2022)
>>> A Rootman: mixing Visions of Nature & Humanity. Philosophy & Poetry
>>> Big Trees Country – Discovering an Italy for Tree-Huggers and Seekers
>>> A Sylvan Buddhism: a personal and spiritual zen practice in Nature