Kirsan Ilyumzhinov: the poetry of David Nikitich Kugultinov is like a breath of air from his native steppe for me

March 13 marked the 99th anniversary of the birth of Laureate of the USSR State Prize, the People's Poet of Kalmykia David Kugultinov (March 13, 1922 - June 17, 2006). We called the first President of Kalmykia, sixth President of FIDE Kirsan Ilyumzhinov and here is what Kirsan Nikolayevich told us by telephone:

"I am happy that David Nikitich talked to me, then still a very young man, and taught life. I am proud that I was lucky to meet one of the greatest people of our time. Now the poetry of David Nikitich Kugultinov is like a breath of air of the native steppe for me.

Kugultinov is a classic of Kalmyk literature, a legendary poet, a symbol of the difficult fate of our people. Every work by David Nikitich has enriched the poetic treasury of the world. At the age of 18, he was admitted to the Writers' Union of the Soviet Union. He was a veteran of the Great Patriotic War, a prisoner of Stalin's camps, the author of more than 80 books, a Hero of Socialist Labour, a laureate of the State Prizes of the USSR and Russia and his lines have been read by representatives of different nationalities for more than half a century.

David Kugultinov is an outstanding poet of our country and the world. Many lines of his works have long been aphorisms. He always emphasized the inviolability of the unity of our steppe people’s history with the history of great Russia. David Nikitich Kugultinov knew and appreciated his native language. For me, his works are good advice, guidance and a lesson in life."