Poetry
28. 12. 2018
Vesna Radović

Many a Bell Once Echoed over Prizren

It is all gone, the youth, you and I,
Whom I still recognize,
Hunched beneath an open umbrella,
Holding hands and kissing, albeit everything
Melted away like frost in spring,
Like a snowman trodden by children.
To everything that is, and everything that was, I will testify that
Many bells once echoed over Prizren!

I still play with one string torn
That scratches my sleepy eyes
Like windblown desert dust
And my skin is like a December, hoarse and cold,
So different from the velvety silk.
Elegantly cloaked in the songs of love,
You are going strong, tall and broad,
While I silently testify that
Many bells once echoed over Prizren!

Like a wounded Holy Virgin of Ljeviš
Above the roaring river Bistrica,
Alone among the desecrated relics
I beckon you to a morning liturgy
Even though everything is empty, except us,
The shivering travellers from afar,
Because a long time ago I swore before God
That I will love you forever.
And there, among the burning candles,
I would quench your thirst by testifying that
Many bells once echoed over Prizren!

You, a fool with angelic eyes,
You, who won’t let me cry,
Come here and don’t be shy,
We shall go down into a deep mine
Searching for the lost dove,
Brought a long time ago by the merchants of Kotor
As an offering to Milutin.
Have mercy on me, my fragile soul,
With the blood still caked under my nails
And the warmth in the eye of the lake, let me testify that
Many bells once echoed over Prizren!

Under the Hills and Plum Trees

I know that you’ve always dreamed of holding your own sons,
Even while you were just a boy in short pants
Going with the men to fish carp
In the spring, with your pockets full of golden corn.
For those unborn sons you were prepared to do anything
Even to die in line for the water at the Čukur fountain
So that gusle players could sing about you in decasyllable!

I know that you could recite the songs about
Karađorđe and the old man Fočo, in one breath;
I know that to you your grandfather’s word was a holy book
On which you swore;
I know that a mountain lodge was your birth house…
Until the thread broke somewhere,
The well dried up, and the old water mill
Forever stopped!

I know that you waged countless wars,
Shot yourself in the heart, echoing wide and clear.
In my dreams, I can always hear
The sound of hooves of a frightened horse,
Of a foal running behind a mare,
Accompanied by horsemen, women and children
And the army that paves the Constantinople road!

I know that you still keep the icon
Of the Holy Seven Young Men of Ephesus,
And the wooden cross that I brought you
As a gift from the monks who live far, far away.
May they protect your sons and grandchildren,
Under the hills and plum trees
That haven’t forgotten the foreign armies and slavery!

Jefimija Is My Name

You gave me everything, Lord,
And you took everything from me.
From me, a daughter of a Serbian nobleman
Who followed the Emperor on the last
Trip to the Holy Mountain.
From me, the wife of despot Uglješa Mrnjavčević,
Before whom the entire Byzantine court bowed its head.
From me, the wisest and the softest
Among the earthly servants.
To me, to despotess Jelena,
Only pain and misery you have left,
With silk yarn, distaff and silver thread
As my shield,
To water this wretched land,
Lost on St. Vitus Day,
With a tear from my grieving heart,
Instead of your blessed rain.

I have nothing, Lord,
I have lost everything –
My father, my husband and my son –
A barbarian foot stomps across my empire,
My church bells are forever voiceless,
Everywhere I go, I carry a heavy doom with me.
In my dreams,
Under the trembling candle light,
Ravens tear apart Lazar’s corpse.
My Maričkokolo is mute,
As peonies in bloom and spilled blood
Paint Kosovo Field red.
While from the East
A young and powerful Sultan marches
With his cavalry to sow death,
In the imperial lure, beyond my reach,
Instead of in my arms,
My little son sleeps eternally,
In Hilandar’s mossy embrace.

Jefimija is my name, Lord,
Barren Serbia is my home,
Deep in a cell of Ljubostinja.
Now, I am a sorrowful nun,
Who owns but a cross and a cassock,
Who embroiders in gold
Cyrillic letters on red silk,
Who, kneeling before the Sultan,
Begs him for mercy to save our children
And young emperors, Vukan and Stefan,
From death.

Confession to the Holy Virgin of Savina

I’ve come from far away, guided by God’s hand
On my road of cross bearing, on the road of the God-Man.
To confess to you,
The Holy Virgin of Savina,
To leave a votive pearl necklace
In the monastery, near the Old Town,
Where Stefan Kosača wintered,
Seeking refuge from frostbite, the Ottomans, and the Venetians,
Surrendering his life to the hands of God
And to the justice of his sword!

All night long the beasts were howling
After me, in search for prey.
I still dream of gaping jaws,
With greed and hunger
Dripping from them.
Although I’m not an innocent child anymore,
I need a table, an icon and Cyrillics
To summon the emperor in Prizren,
To kiss our Patriarch’s hand in Peć.
My grandfather taught me
That wolves are the hounds of Saint Sava
And that you can tell a Serb by his slava and fresco!

Uninvited, I’ve come from far away,
Like a hunted nun from a burning monastery,
Who heard the bells of a sacred temple.
That evening, the rain poured on the coast
As if it had not rained for centuries,
And the scent of cypress was all-embracing.
While in the dusk the monks
Performed the Supplicatory Canon
For health and salvation,
A black tear from a black eye
Fell off and stained the imperial gates!

Translated from Serbian by Irina Vujičić and Ivana Tomić

Poetry
28. 12. 2018
Jelena Adamović Šaula

Wish

Please break the water
fish for me, Ocean.
Break the sky clean.

Again I might emerge
in opal’s eye,
in skin of an orange.

Prease be still one night.
Ride with the moon,
be still and dissolve distance.

Again I might emerge:
drop of an atmosphere’s dew,
may eco me on trip of life.

At Sunset Hour

Wrapped around evening
day in its last desire
colors burning
in sun’s garden
over whole Earth,
place to place…

Silence overpowering dusk
breeze bravely escaping distance
to meet with stars
bed of diamonds
in which cosmos sleeps,
forever calm.

Moonlight Fantasy

Night falls,
doorstep turns
into moonlight rug.

Open the door.
Step into silver
of midnight hour,
on wings of silence
with aura of weightlessness
between dream and wake.
Bat ton’t avake.

Glide ever so serene
toward stars and Moon.
Soul leading ahead
through cosmic wasteland spread
(travelinng 1 st class).

You and Angel,
or some star,
gliding ahead.

Poetry
28. 12. 2018
Gordon Samer

Lazarus Heart

He looked beneath his shirt today
There was a wound in his flesh so deep and wide
From the wound a lovely flower grew
From somewhere deep inside
He turned around to face his mother
To show her the wound in his breast that burned like a brand
But the sword that cut him open
Was the sword in his mother’s hand

Every day another miracle
Only death will tear us apart
To sacrifice a life for yours
I’d be the blood of the Lazarus heart
The blood of the Lazarus heart

Though the sword was his protection
The wound itself would give him power
The power to remake himself
at the time of his darkest hour
She said the wound would give him courage and pain
The kind of pain that you can’t hide
From the wound a lovely flower grew
From somewhere deep inside

Every day another miracle
Only death will keep us apart
To sacrifice a life for yours
I’d be the blood of the Lazarus heart
The blood of the Lazarus heart

Birds on the roof of my mother’s house
I’ve no stones that chase them away
Birds on the roof of my mother’s house
Will sit on my roof some day
They fly at the window, they fly at the door
Where does she get the strength to fight them anymore
She counts all her children as a shield against the pain
Lifts her eyes to the sky like a flower in the rain

Every day another miracle
Only death will keep us apart
To sacrifice a life for yours
I’d be the blood of the Lazarus heart
The blood of the Lazarus heart

The Wild Sea

I saw it again this evening
Black sail in a pale yellow sky
And just as before, in a moment
It was gone where the grey gulls fly.

If it happens again I shall worry
That only a strange ship could fly
And my sanity scanned the horizon
In the light of a darkening sky.

That night as I walked in my slumber
I waded into the sea strand
And I swam with the moon and her lover
Until I lost sight of the land.

I swam ’til the night became morning
Black sail in a reddening sky
Found myself on the deck of a rolling ship
So far where no grey gulls fly.

All around me was silence
As if mocking my frail human hopes
And a question mark hung in the canvas
For the wind that had died in the ropes.

I may have slept for an hour
I may have slept for a day
For I woke in a bed of white linen
And the sky was the colour of clay.

At first just the rustle of canvas
And the gentlest breath on my face
Then a galloping line of white horses
Said that soon we were in for a race.

The gentle sigh turned to a howling
And the grey sky she angered to black
As my anxious eyes searched the horizon
And the gathering sea at my back.
Did I see the shade of a sailor
On the bridge through the wheelhouse pane
Holding fast to the wheel of the rocking ship
As I squinted my eyes in the rain
For the ship had turned into the wind
Against the storm to brace
And underneath the sailor’s hat
I saw my father’s face.

If a prayer today is spoken
Please offer it for me
When the bridge to heaven is broken
And you’re lost on the wild wild sea.
Lifts her eyes to the sky like a flower in the rain.
_________________________
*In the last issue of the magazine „People Say“ (32/33) these two poems by
Gordon Samer were mistakenly signed by the name of the translator into
the Serbian language, poet Damir Malešević. We apologize to the author
and the interpreter.

Рубрике

ДОНАЦИЈЕ

Претплатите се и дарујте независни часописи Људи говоре, да бисмо трајали заједно

даље

Људи говоре је српски загранични часопис за књижевност и културу који излази у Торонту од 2008.године. Поред књижевности и уметности, бави се свим областима које чине културу српског народа.

У часопису је петнаестак рубрика и свака почиње са по једном репродукцијом слика уметника о коме се пише у том броју. Излази 4 пута годишње на 150 страна, а некада и као двоброј на 300 страна.

Циљ му је да повеже српске писце и читаоце ма где они живели. Његова основна уређивачка начела су: естетско, етичко и духовно јединство.

Уредништво

Мило Ломпар
главни и одговорни уредник
(Београд, Србија)

Владимир Димитријевић
оперативни уредник за матичне земље
(Чачак, Србија)

Радомир Батуран
оперативни уредник за дијаспору
(Торонто, Канада)

Александар Петровић
уредник за културу
(Београд, Србија)

Жељко Продановић
уредник за поезију
(Окланд, Нови Зеланд)

 

Небојша Радић
уредник за језик и писмо
(Кембриџ, Енглеска)

Жељко Родић
уредник за уметност
(Оквил, Канада)

Никол Марковић
уредник енглеске секције и секретар Уредништва
(Торонто, Канада)

Џонатан Лок Харт
уредник енглеске секције
(Торонто, Канада)

Лектори

Душица Ивановић
Торонто

Сања Крстоношић
Торонто

Александра Крстовић
Торонто

Графички дизајн

Антоније Батуран
Лондон

Технички уредник

Радмило Вишњевац
Торонто

Издавач

Часопис "Људи говоре"
The Journal "People Say"

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Toronto ON,
M4C 1X4 Canada

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Торонто

Контакт

Никол Марковић, секретар
т: 416 823 8121


Радомир Батуран, oперативни уредник
т: 416 558 0587


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© људи говоре 2019