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  • Two Poems
  • Nikola Madzirov (bio) and Graham W. Reid (bio)
    Translation from Macedonian by Peggy and Graham W. Reid. Translation from Macedonian by Magdalena Horvat


I lived at the edge of the townlike a streetlamp whose light bulbno one ever replaces.Cobwebs held the walls together,and sweat bound our clasped hands.I hid my teddy bearin holes in crudely built stone wallssaving him from dreams.

Day and night I made the threshold come alivereturning like a bee thatalways goes back to the previous flower.It was a time of peace when I left home:

the bitten apple was not bruised,on the letter a stamp with an old abandoned house.

From birth I've migrated to quiet placesand voids have hovered beneath melike snow that doesn't know if it belongsto the earth or to the air. [End Page 91]

shadows pass us by

We'll meet one day,like a paper boat anda watermelon that's been cooling in the river.The anxiety of the world willbe with us. Our palmswill eclipse the sun and we'llapproach each other holding lanterns.

One day, the wind won'tchange direction.The birch will send away leavesinto our shoes on the doorstep.The wolves will come afterour innocence.The butterflies will leavetheir dust on our cheeks.

An old woman will tell storiesabout us in the waiting room every morning.Even what I'm saying hasbeen said already: we're waiting for the windlike two flags on a border.

One day every shadowwill pass us by. [End Page 92]

Nikola Madzirov

Nikola Madzirov is a Macedonian poet, editor, and translator. He was born in Strumica, Macedonia, to a family of Balkan War refugees. His books of poetry in clude Locked in the City, winner of the Studentski Zbor Award; Somewhere Nowhere, winner of the Aco Karamanov Award; and Relocated Stone, winner of the Hubert Burda Award.

Graham W. Reid

Graham W. Reid (1938–2015) taught English for twenty-five years at Ss. Cyril and Methodius University, in Skopje, Republic of Macedonia. His books of translation include White Dawns by Kočo Racin, Reading the Ashes: An Anthology of the Poetry of Modern Macedonia (with Milne Holton), and The Macedonian Novel (with others). In 1973 he and his wife, Peggy Reid, received the Struga Poetry Festival Translation Prize for The Sirdar by Grigor Prlicev.

Peggy Reid

Peggy Reid (1939–2015) taught English at Ss. Cyril and Methodius University, in Skopje, Republic of Macedonia, from 1969 to 2006. Her books of translation include Do Not Awaken Them with Hammers by Lidija Dimkovska (with Llubica Arsovka) and pH Neutral History by Lidija Dimkovska (with Llubica Arsovka). In 1973 she and her husband, Graham W. Reid, received the Struga Poetry Festival Translation Prize for The Sirdar by Grigor Prlicev. In 1994 she received the Macedonian Literary Translators' Society Award.

Magdalena Horvat

Magdalena Horvat was born in Skopje, Macedonia, and is the author of the poetry collections Bluish and other poems, Sensitive to Light: Selected Poems, and This is it, your. She has translated into Macedonian Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar, Fiona Sampson's The Distance Between Us, and Anna Aguilar-Amat's Music and Scurvy. Her translations from Macedonian to English include Nikola Madzirov's Remnants of Another Age (with Peggy Reid, Graham W. Reid, and Adam Reed).



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pp. 91-92
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