These poems by Lidija Dimkovska have been translated from the original Macedonian by Ljubica Arsovska and Patricia Marsh.
it’s still weightier than even the future of a newborn baby.
waiting for the lift to come down from the top floor.
“What does she look like!” they whisper,
then run up the stairs to their homes and lock the doors behind them,
afraid that Freedom might
lean against their door,
sprawl at their threshold,
ask them for water, bread or a bed.
And they don’t know that the freedom they have in their life
is measured with the remaining cups from the tea set
in the Jewish museums across the world,
they don’t know that the seas wash up people too, not just seashells,
they don’t know that the executioner becomes a victim when he beheads her
and the victims become executioners when they forget her,
they don’t know that the metal head of the hammer is always loose
and falls off before the hammer is swung, straight onto your fingers,
they don’t know that it is that same freedom
they learn about in history classes,
but is easily run down by the train on the nearby railway,
they don’t know that the freedom they have in their life
is a white surface over a black pit,
the same as the belly of a pregnant woman
that they too were born from,
but it is only in death
that some will also become free.
A Letter from Prison
they’re not interested in,
Place of Birth, a point of birth and of no return.
in front of them all.