Translation Tuesdays: ‘Three plus Two’

Each season we share a series of translated work from a particular country, as part of our mission to share voices you may not yet know! Building bridges, creating conversations across borders… making a whole with Fragmented Voices. Today, we are delighted to bring you some Polish poems, translated into English. Enjoy!

Three poems by Ilona Witkowska

Translated by Mircea Dan Duta


not wanting to sleep,
not wanting to work

building yourself chapels
while something is still lurking me here

there’s a free way
but just step on it

equation without three knowns /  

the sun of May was burning my head

(even if by reflex I use the form “us”,
I was alone that time)

(using by reflex the form “us”,
who did I actually mean?)

the best is where we just are,
for it’s actually us and no one else /

when I was a little girl, granny used to teach me
trample earthworms and just don’t worry about the thing;
she used to say: oh, yes! oh yes!

Prose Poems by Barbara Klicka

Translated by David Malcolm


A start like a recipe for spring. I was going a long journey in a fast car. Everywhere there were clouds, I appreciated the value of the sun-roof. We passed some storks, so I said:

look, storks. He said: you’re happy like a little kid. Stupid, I said, I’m happy like a little kid, because you’re speaking to me like to a woman in April, be my friend, I want to be aglow from that. Then

I called the witnesses on the spot, e-mails, ballets. All in pretty big quantities, because nothing stubbornly would do for me. Doesn’t matter, because the calendar resurrection’s on the way

for this I’ll bring the world a cheesecake.
Let them all love me, since you can’t.


A dream of seven nails in the skull. I hesitate – for none of the possibilities is ready for sense. My father says: think, you don’t cry out. I say to my father: cry out, don’t think. I live free as the wind, she feeds me.

And now look – I’ve picked up seven nails for my dance; seven guys from the Albatros and one dead girl. I lived over brow, over tit, over the wise stream, but the time came when they threw me out and led me to the field.

And in the field the harness goes on. Hi hi, the harness goes on in the field. Long live want and barren sand! May the grains fall to the depths of the seas, may the ponds go down in algae and black duckweed! Here the earth’s only good for covering things up.

Translation Tuesday – ‘Two by Two’

Each season we share a series of translated work from a particular country, as part of our mission to share voices you may not yet know! Building bridges, creating conversations across borders… making a whole with Fragmented Voices. Today, we are delighted to bring you some Polish poems, translated into English. Enjoy!

Two Poems by ENORMI STATIONIS (Bartosz Radomski)


to the unaided eye
invisible from the terrestrial world
a small red dwarf

among the infinite number of stars
shining in the universe
is closest to the Sun

but the order of the cosmos
does not allow them to get close


In the morning I can still hear its sound.
The music still reverberates in my head.
The sun wakes up and lights up the sky.
My world is just going to sleep. It is rocking.
I am unable to read the notes
From today’s stave of my life.
I sing and play to my own tune.

Two Poems by David Mateusz


I saw a homeless guy on Dębnicki Bridge spread his arms
out in the orans posture, waiting for what
is yet to come. I took walks along the boulevard
and recognised the spot where the Vistula coughed up 

two dead swans. Once a year,
I offered a sacrifice in the form of illness,
usually in November, for the sake of 
peace. I heard a rook praying out by 
Planty Park, and the spring airing of townhouses 
accepted as proof of changes to come. I saw

the march of inequality and bottles upon the heads
of the Left. I saw the march of inequality and scars
upon the heads of the Right. You were all beautiful

and drunk that night, and I ate up the hate 

both your hands served up, when I ran out in rapture
right into the annunciation of some suspect ladies 
and among girls as sad as the Ruczaj district
             to eat up

their fish with knife and fork, and the sky using fingers,
running blind. 
    You showed me how to love and betray,

and so I knew how to love and betray. I inhaled
sterile apartments and the stink of their bins. Carrying
across a river the carcass of an idea, I saw
a homeless guy on Dębnicki Bridge spread his arms
in the orans posture, waiting for what
is yet to come.
And I’m still looking,

as that same intense absence dictates the pulse –

* translated by Marek Kazmierski


Since I’ve been living in water tower station,
I step outside just to trim the privets.

You’ll get a slap on the wrist, you nearly cut 
your finger off, my father says handling sheers

sticky with resin, obedient and quiet like mother,

looking a lot better in his hands. How many times
did I get a slap on the wrist for touching or taking it
upon myself or my lips? How many times did I have

to return and apologize? Since

I’ve been living in water tower station, our hands
are full of resin. – How will you finish, put it back where it belongs
– my mom cuts in.

Thrice I asked about the name of the plant.

* Translated by Lynn Suh

Translation Tuesdays – Looking forward!

Dear Reader,

It probably hasn’t escaped your keen powers of observation that we struggled to deliver our translation feature last autumn!

We rely on collaboration with fellow authors from other countries, and it’s difficult to find a replacement at short notice. We’ll be rethinking our strategy for the coming seasons, but are delighted to be sharing Polish work for our Spring Translation Tuesdays.

Literature is international. We draw inspiration from formulations, images, words, and ideas from other literatures. That is why translations are so important: to keep the dialogue going; to grow and breathe; to understand that there is more than one’s own experience. Therefore we would like to keep the feature as part of our magazine, but we need to change the way we source translations. (Do you have a translation you’d like to share? Send us your work here!)

This spring we bring you three new voices from Poland. It is thanks to the versatile and multilingual Romanian author Mircea Dan Duta, who organised everything. Polish literature is considered one of the great literatures of the world. No less than six Nobel Prize winners in literature come from Poland, the latest one being the amazing Olga Tokarczuk.

We hope you are as excited as we are by these new voices from Poland, which represent only a small sample of what this country so rich in poetry and stories has to offer.

Natalie Nera

Translation Tuesday – Japanese Poetry

It’s almost November. The nights are cold, crisp, and brutal here in the North-East – but the skies are glorious, and the coloursOh! Join me for a cuppa whilst I share today’s autumnal offering: translated pieces from a volume called Japanese Poetry Now, remade into English by Thomas Fitzimmons.


Rue Collinge shares pieces from Japanese Poetry Now, 1971, trans. Thomas Fitzimmons

Slovakian Spring – Part 2

Dear Readers,

We’re not certain how, but our second instalment of Slovakian Poetry from our Spring season has disappeared into the aether – which is a pity, as these poets are well worth the read! (You can still see Part 1 & Part 3 under Translations, so make sure to check those out whilst you’re here.)

Today we are publishing Part 2 afresh, and hope it brightens your Tuesday – we know it has done so for us! What a gorgeous way to kick off our Autumn Season of the magazine!


people / clays / permafrost’ by Ola Glustik

I was seven when my neighbour / father 
of four children decided to leave / at his home 
in the living room / and then the other / in the barn a shot 
in twelve other / a rope in an apple tree 

it was always minus twenty outside / beaten,
barren land /an economic crisis
and at home at the table the presence / a tea 
spoon you can’t bend 

We / the children of this street had the courage 
to play only in the cemetery / to prepare 
a grave space / to serve a simple 
ceremony / the end 

We remained silent for a long time / To this day 
we don’t speak /since childhood, we’ve had our mouths full 
of dirt and stones

Translated by Natalie Nera

The Inextricable Blade’ by Erik Markovič

The salt of the earth, unbroken 
I can vouch for forgiveness in the woods, in the lakes
in the shells of oysters, and in the womb of a lightsaber.

I am without the earth; I have not grown roots
with my hands in your hair, with my tongue
in your mouth, not on the Moon, I only fly
and pity the wide and clear field beneath me
Your field, that is neither tasteless nor flavoured with spices,
unbroken by my grace, untainted with my blood.

You cannot separate your arms from your body, and stretch them towards me,
although you would love to fly after me, like your soul, whose dove
I caught under my shirt when the body gave up.
And from her into the earth it flew until it got rotten during the flight and turned into black fertile soil.

From the breast of your burnt hills, you speak of your desire silently
high up in the trees, Seeds in whose name the branch does not sprout out, 
for only above your head, unmoving, it grows wild in brambles.  

Translated by Natalie Nera; from the collection ‘Ikoncikosť. Prestupovanie Slnka’

Weight of the Balance’ by Erik Ondrejička

Weight of the balance
in quiet dance of leaves
in a body of ash

in orbital curves
of a path in rough sketch
that’s vanished in a flash

Decodes delicacy
so it may be pure
with hardly a word said

and from lead creates
like an alchemist
ever newly lead

Translated by John Minahane

sulphur’ by Martina Straková

touches our sun-tanned bodies
in the spots
where shingles
impress their shape we go barefoot
to make us feel again
that we’re still living
that nothing of this is sham
we sink our roots at the most trusty points
where salt means pulp
and water is dim and cold

Translated by John Minahane

Meet the Poets!

Ola Glustik (b. 1987, Slovakia) is a poet, publicist and media specialist. Currently working on the manuscript of the third poetry collection called Body and (con)text. Part of manuscript was awarded in prestigious czechoslovak competition Básne SK/CZ 2021. Ola is going to participate in the Spring Edition of the Visegrad Literary Residency Program in 2022 in Bratislava.

Her second book Atlas of biological women (2017) was awarded with the premium prize by the Slovak Literary Fund and with The M. Rúfus premium prize. This book was published partly in Czech (in anthology Být knihou a v rukou se ti otevřít, Nakl. P. Mervart, 2019) and in Romanian (Atlasul femeilor biologice, frACTalia, 2020, transl.: Mircea Dan Duta). She debuted with the collection of poems called Placed into trees (2014).

Her poems and publicistic texts were published online and in magazines in Slovakia (Rozum, Fraktál, Glosolália, Knižná revue), in the Czech Republic (Ravt, Revue Weles, Cadena Magica, Poli5), in Romania, Peru and Serbia. They were also read in Slovak national radio and published in numerous anthologies.

She is one of the founding members of the Bratislava author’s club BRAK, which is an incubator for the young writers in the Slovak capital city. In 2019 worked as a secretary of the Slovak PEN Centre.

She worked as a journalist in the regional newspaper and in the economic daily newspaper. Nowadays she is working as a media specialist for two big construction and industrial companies.

Erik Markovič (1972) – poet, philosopher and songwriter. He has published a set of 7 collections of poetry: Ikonickosť. Prestupovanie Slnka. (LN Studňa, 2014), from philosophy Po-postmoderný princíp palintropickosti 1 (LN Well, 2017). Through his writing and work, he seeks to identify post-postmodern aesthetic principles. From 2018 to 2021, he was the president of AOSS, The Association of Authors’ Organisations in Slovakia.

Erik Ondrejička was born on May 1, 1964 in the Old Town of Bratislava, where he still lives and works. He is a graduate of Bratislava’s Technical University, Department of Geodesy and Cartography. He has been writing poetry for more than three decades, however, he made his publication debut in 2004, with the collection On the Inner Side of the Eyelids. Five of his eight books have been awarded literary prizes (Eyes and Rhymes, On the Inner Side of the, Eyelids, (e)Pigrams, Say Just a Word) and Happygrams. Eyes and Rhymes, the revised version of On the Inner Side of the Eyelids, the bibliophilic collection IM PULZ – Waiting of Substance, AB80, Happygrams and Abecedári received honourable mention in the competition for the Most Beautiful Book of Slovakia in 2010-2019. Abecedári was also awarded the Bronze Medal at the Creativity International Awards (USA) and in the national competition for Best Children´s Book of Summer 2015 and Most Beautiful Children´s Book of Summer 2015. Erik Ondrejička is a member of the Slovak PEN Centre and the Club of Independent Writers. More information at

Martina Straková (Slovakia) studied cultural sciences and graduated from the Faculty of Arts at the Comenius University in Bratislava. She received scholarships at leading German universities and her PhD title in Philosophy. For her poetry debut Postcards from Invisible Places (Pohľadnice z neviditeľných miest, 2019) she received the Bridges of Struga Award for the best poetry debut in 2019 awarded annually under the auspices of the UNESCO by the world’s renowned poetry festival, the Struga Poetry Evenings Festival in North Macedonia. Since 2013, she has been co-organizing the International Poetry Festival Ars Poetica, where she holds a free creative writing workshop Bring Your Poem offered to the wide public as a regular part of the festival program. She is dedicated to writing poetry, fairy tales for children, painting and artistic translation from/to German and English language. She lives and works in Bratislava. 

Video-poem “I’m Sheltering from a Storm”: 

The poem sulphur comes from the poetry collection Martina Straková: Postcards from Invisible Places, Ars Poetica Publishing House, Bratislava, 2019, translated into English by John Minahane.

Slovakian Spring – Part 3

For our last instalment, we introduce five lyrical poets who responded to our call. We hope that their poetic outlook speaks across borders, and shows different dimensions of being.

near the blue woods’ by Marta Franeková

between the water and water
plant me
just beyond the meadow 
for which bees have always meant everything 

I’ll breathe in greedily 
as if I’d never existed for real and in reality 
until now 
In a forest full of consciousness
I wake up my own hands and they 
in the same instant fly away
the trees dress themselves in the festive costumes 
we’ll be together 
and invoke heaven with our eyes 
for to use my voice would not be appropriate

the day I begin 
to ignore the light 
I shall count the growth rings I’ve lived 
and when it’s decided 
when the time comes to cut me down
I’ll fall in your direction
where we felt the bare moss under our feet 

Rebirth’ by Judita Ďurčová

Kneeling on the seashore                                       
I pick up the fragments                                                        
of the autumn goblins made of glass,                                             
who sleep by the door                                           
of the soul of fire.

At the midnight inn
The White Death awaits me                                                            
His serpent-like eyes are full of sadness,                                       
while silken trees are caressing                                                      
my cheeks…

On the stairs of the blue rainbow
He leads me by the hand                                                                         
to the sacred ruins                                                      
where angels dance                                                                           
in the golden grass.                                                                        

Pinning’ by Vlasta Mesárošová

You give me crooked drawing pins.
At least I can hold my breath.
They say:
“Don’t whine, keep walking, kneepads 
enjoy the whole experience!”

I’ve got used to the magician
pulling out bad luck from the hat for me.
Wrapped in shrapnel, just in case,
to –
to hold together better,
so it won’t vanish with the next day,
to scrape the gilding off the bone,

the slashes on my knees don’t hurt

The Sun Is Love’ by Anton Andrej Pižurný

Like the metastasis of evil today
envy pervades everywhere, 
changing subtly 
into hatred.
The god Ares rubs
His hands with glee.
He doesn’t have to think of any schemes, 
we’ll kill each other without him.
Yet again, 
the sun rises.
It’s still up there, mighty 
and unrivaled.
Yet, Hope like pollen 
still paints our mornings.
The Sun is Love.
Where does a good man live?
In each one of us.
In everyone.

City’ by Dušan Láznička

the city of screams

will perfect
the pulse of the present

– absolutely certain


x x x

the city of sleep
not worth

I see
the pleasure of the ruins
the whiteness of the glow
the fire of the dead

malignant silence
without emptiness

I feel
The coldness of the fear

in the eyes – my sorrow
near the temple
             a REVOLVER

Meet the Poets!

Judita Ďurčová (1983), a poet and prose writer, read history at the University in Bratislava, Slovakia. She lives in Nové Město nad Váhom. Her poems appear regularly in literary magazines.

Marta Franeková was born in 1961, in Námestov. She lives and works as a kindergarten teacher in Oravské Veselý. Her work has been published in the following periodicals: Dotyki, Literary Weekly, in the magazine Vertigo, in the collections of the literary portal Litweb; the latter one also published her collection Oh Willow, Willow in the anthologies Pars Artem and Svetlom modrý. She made her book debut in 2012 with the collection Mute Herons (DALi Košice); in 2015 she published the collection Odklonené svety (DALi Košice) with the support of the State Literary Fund, and in 2019 her poetry book Rozprávanky (Perfekt Bratislava) was again financially supported by the Literary Fund.

Dušan Láznička (b. 1975) started his literary work when styding a in high school. His science fiction triptych was awarded third place in the National Literary Competition for Secondary School students. Later, he worked as an editor (Christian magazine Plátok), essayist and poet. In the second half of the 1990s he joined the Omega Literary Club in Trenčín, where he published poetry and prose in their collections and anthologies. He was the editor-in-chief of the club’s magazine Ars – Verbum. In 2012, he won second place in the prose category of the Jozef Branecký Literary Competition. In 2019, Pars Artem published his collection Journeys, which is his tribute to surrealism. In it, he experiments with automatic text and surreal images.

Vlasta Mesárošová was born in 1969 to a family of mixed nationalities. Part Hungarian, Slovak, German and Roma Gypsy, her literary poeticism is influenced by this rich heritage. Vlasta studied social work and has devoted her whole life to helping others. She is also involved in humanitarian aid. She is a family person, very proud of her husband and two sons.  

Anton Andrej Pižurný, born in 1961 near Zilina, is a writer, copywriter, publisher, editor, and radio presenter. He has authored 11 prose and poetry books. Moreover, he has written 5 books of reportages and 7 books for children. His other activities involve script writing and an ongoing collaboration with the Ministry for Education in Slovakia. He lives in Bratislava with his wife and three children.

Mum (A Phenomenal Woman) by Nikola Veselá

I want to thank you for your brightest smile 
that showed me
how you sacrificed your dreams
so that I can pursue mine.
I want to apologize for calling you pretty
before calling you brave or smart
because your mind
is the most beautiful piece of art.

A Note from the Editor

I often use creative writing in my English Language classes to improve my students’ understanding and feel for the language. Needless to say, they always rise to the challenge, but every now and again, you encounter a rare talent that leaves you speechless. Nikola Veselá is such a talent. She wrote this poem last year when she was only 14.

We had planned to share this piece to wish women around the world Happy International Women’s Day and Happy Mother’s Day. Now, just a country away, Ukraine is being torn apart by war. Women and girls are being impacted. Teenagers the same age as Nikola. Women the same age as you, as your sister, mother, niece, daughter…

If you can, it would be wonderful if you could donate to the United Nations Population Fund, which is particularly focused on helping endangered women and girls in Ukraine. You can find out more (and donate!) here.

Meet the Poet

Nikola Veselá is a student at Pražské humanitní gymnázium in Prague. She is an avid reader, and her specialist subject is Jane Austen.

Slovakian Spring

with Raspberries on Her Fingers

by Miroslav Dávid

i think everybody would want her
and preferably if she were only theirs
nailed upside down
bleeding raspberries on the Marian cross 
from steel reinforcement

with raspberries on her fingers 
she won’t hurt anybody

 they’re from her garden 

that is like a poem 
and from all the healing herbs of true love and shots of rum

 so don’t you interfere, devil 
even if she’s bare to her soul
she’s going to be mine. 

Miroslav Dávid writing as Moddivari and River Salome: “with Raspberries on Fingers” (Elist Publishing, 2018)


by Danica Hrnčiarová Šišláková

burlesque tones of silly wishes
reverberated in the trumpets of Jericho
forgiven is the one 
who wounded
the beast inside me that doesn’t grow

the battle is over
only silence now 
I peer into the poetry window
I’ve (hopefully) won the duel with pride
the other results – one all

The Ballad of the Pearl (to All Petrarcas)

by Vladimír Skalský

Like a scalpel stuck in the chest
a grain of sand hurts so much
it penetrated the oyster’s armour
only because 
In the moment of weakness
It was let close to the heart

There is nothing left
but to wrap the pain in beauty
to dull the pain with words
and, with the cut-up heart,
toll furiously
all the bells
of the lonely bedroom

I Stopped You

by Vladimír Skalský

I stopped you in the street
Maybe you would have been run over by a car
Maybe you would have met a great love
And your son might have destroyed the world
Or solved the nuclear waste problem
I held you up for three minutes
Surely another sperm would make it
Marilyn Monroe would have crooked legs
Kennedy’s assassin wouldn’t be born at all
Ten years from now, we’d land on Mars

I stopped you in the street
And that is how I changed the world

Meet the Poets

Miroslav Dávid is a Slovak poet, an award-winning lyricist who celebrated massive success with hits for Slovak rock and pop acts in the 80s. He is also a music manager and producer. So far, he has four poetry collections published: Rogalo, veľryba a Kristus Pán (2017: Trio Publishing, Bratislava), Detox (2017: Silvia Hodálová – VIUSS, Bratislava), s Malinami nastoknutými na Prstoch (2018: Vydavateľstvo Elist), Domino (2019: Vydavateľstvo Elist). He has also been awarded prestigious literary prices such Mobel Prize 2018, 2019 and 2020 respectively or Pars Poetry 2018. He has three children and two grandchildren. He is divorced.

Danica Hrnčiarová Šišláková, an award-winning poet and a software analyst, comes from Banská Bystrica (Slovakia) but is currently living in the Czech Republic. She started writing first poems when she  was about 8 years old. At the age of 13, she became a published poet: she published in the literary supplement of the magazine Nové slovo, with then the editor-in-chief Vojtech Mihálik and in the anthology Právo na píseň. After starting a family, she took a long hiatus from writing. After 2015, she returned to poetry again and ventured to read it publicly. Her poems appeared in many anthologies in Slovakia, the Czech Republic, as well as publication in the online magazine of the Association of World Writers (AWW). 

Vladimír Skalský was born on April 26, 1972 in Prešov, Slovakia, where he graduated from grammar school. Later, he earned a master’s degree in theoretical physics at the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics of Charles University in Prague. As well as running his own business, since 1992 he has held a number of public office positions and management positions in various media corporations. Since 1996, he has been the vice-chairman of the Slovak-Czech Club and deputy editor-in-chief of the magazine Slovenské dotyky (Slovak Touches), and from 2004 to 2013 he was the editor of the literary quarterly, the Czech-Slovak journal Zrkadlenie/Zrcadlení (Mirror/Zrcadlení). Since 2006 he has been the President of the World Association of Slovaks Abroad, and since 2009 he has been the Vice President of the Europeans in the World, based in Brussels. Since 2014 he has been the director of the Slovak House in Prague. He is a member (2004 – 2010 and from 2019 until now) and Vice-Chairman (2005 – 2008) of the Government Council for National Minorities of the Czech Republic. He has authored many books: the collections of poems To Silence (2000) and From Two Shores (2017) and the collection of essays Keywords: Prague, Slovakia, literature (2004). All in all, he appears as either an author, co-author or editor of about thirty books. He was co-editor of the three-volume anthology of Slovak literature abroad Between Two Houses (2008-2010) and co-editor of Čítanka moderní slov. literature for secondary schools (2003). His poems and essays have been translated into English, French, Czech, Chinese, Hungarian, Russian and Serbian.

All translations by Natalie Nera.

A Peruvian Autumn – Part 3


 by Filonilo Catalina

who are broken
are always trying to fix ourselves
either with a glass of wine in our hand
or with a syringe in our arms.
we always try to mend ourselves
in church with our hair neatly combed
or with a partner by the hand.
who are broken
walk until our shoes are worn out
we stand in long lines in the pews
and with sad smiles we wait well seated.
who are broken
say good morning without thinking
and without remedy 
we leave this world 
with our suits on and our hair in a ponytail.

Until the last song

by Lourdes Aparicion

In memory of Evelyn Rondinelli, my Blue Orbital

I have searched for you under the rocks
who have been sleeping since you resigned from Ayacucho
your shadow was a blue bird
I was walking the glory
shaggy heads
and the adobe houses
where we lived when you were meat
you used to hide
under that river that led us
and dance to the last song
in dis-crazy parties,
You expected that every night
tear themselves apart before your eyes
with your smile
a blue rainbow
a serene and blue sky
a calm blue river
a blue rain
and this heart that
I know
rips apart

Hymn to Seeing

by Valeria Chauvel

I’ve seen nature, infinite, boundless
The life I see around is countless
There is hope with us, I may prove
I’ve seen them breathe and move.

I’ve seen the night white colours
In between its dark hues
I’ve seen the light undercover
Behind the clouds, it diffuse.

I’ve stopped to walk and talk
To learn, to see and hear
In the space, timeless clock
The beauty and sounds in here.

The New Life

by Willy Gómez

We were leaving in your car and we had an open moon chasing us. 
On your body grew other shores of high meadows, 
and in my hands your photos, my glasses, your citrus cologne and my cigarettes.

We were driving at 120 km/h listening to the radio Tragedies of Priam, 
astonished because of the alum stains on the track 
that darkened the road towards a horizon of frightened lights.  

A protagonist of the escape was going with us to the Lima carnival. 
I was saving for the arrival of its bridges and its gardens, 
the waltzes of the old neighborhood, the adobo recipe and the modern dance.

Until the narcissus came to us wanting to fight, 
after the desire to go further 
while the cars slowed down one after the other
and slid over the real landscape of wires and poles of the Costa Verde. 

That starless night we were caught in a double collision between machines. 

But we could still hear the sea breaking the waves.

About the Authors 

Lourdes Aparicion (Apurímac, 1993). Lourdes Apari Moscoso, also Lourdes Aparicion. Migrant, activist, psychologist and community cultural manager. She lives in Paracas (Pisco, Ica), where she is the co-founder of the Emergentes del Mar Cultural Group. She is the author of the “Warmi” plaquette. Likewise, she has been invited to participate in different literary events, national and international, and some of her texts make up various literary exhibitions in Peru, Bolivia, Argentina and Mexico. In 2020, she obtained the first honorable mention in the XI El Poeta Joven del Perú Contest with a first version of her book entitled Apacheta.

Filonilo Catalina: He is a cultural manager. He won the COPÉ prize for poetry in 2005 with his book El Monstruo de los Cerros and, in 2015, he obtained the first place for poetry in the “El País de Ofelia” award in Spain with the book Arquitectura de Pájaros. He has published seven books of poetry. In his youth he was a member of the Box team from Arequipa. Nowadays he is currently dedicated to make musical compositions. He directs the label “Rupestre” with which he disseminates the poetry of his country.

Valeria Chauvel Moscoso (1998, Lima, Perú). Studies philosophy at the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, and is as passionate about poetry and visual arts as she is about her career. She has participated in a collective publication with the FCE in the poetry book “Versos desde el encierro” and in the recital of La Huaca es Poesía, “De las voces del Perú y Latinoamérica para el mundo” (From the voices of Peru and Latin America to the world). She is currently part of the organization La Huaca es Poesía. Also, she is about to finish her first collection of poems, where the search for meaning, existential emptiness and the absurd are the themes that prompted the creation of this first book of verses.

Willy Gómez Migliaro was born in Lima-Peru on August 13, 1968. Winner of the Latin American poetry prize Festival de la Lira 2015. He has directed the poetry magazines Polvo enamorado (1990-1992) and Tokapus (1993-1996). He has also published the books of poetry Etérea (2002), Nada como los campos (2003) and La breve eternidad de Raymundo Nóvak (2005), all under the Hipocampo Editores label; Moridor (Pakarina Ediciones, 2010), Construcción Civil (Paracaídas Editores, 2013), Nuevas Batallas (Arteidea Editores, 2013), Pintura roja (Paracaidas Editores, 2016) Lírico puro (Hipocampo Editores, 2017), Among the research books it has been compiler of the book OPEMPE, relatos orales asháninka y nomatsiguenga (Editorial AndesBook, 2009) y Cholos, 13 poetas peruanos nacidos entre el 70 y el 90  (Catafixia, 2014). His poems have appeared in major Spanish-American and European magazines. He has been published in different national and international poetry anthologies. He is currently a professor of literature, creative writing, and literary consultant.

A Peruvian Autumn – Part 2

Borderline poem 10

by Jorge Ccoyllurpuma

I’m tied to the ground like a sad child’s balloon or the smile of a drunk.
I’m made out of cardboard and milk, of darts; I’m made up of feathers you don’t have but that I invented for you.
I’m a stone at the window of God; I’m also the stone in your dirty window.
I am a plastic kite and a boat in the bathtub.
I’m a bathtub of hot water, with Pisco and eggs for your stomachache.
I am, I’ll say it now, your dirty laundry.
I’m tied to the sky by every fiber of December’s rain, I’m blue incense.
I’m the unmovable afternoon right where you are.

* From Para detener el tiempo (2013)
* Translated by Jesús de la Garza, Martina Hoines and Pieter Odendaal

a violet dawn before the great wilderness

by Victoria Mallorga

burning tires
lavender grows down highways 
as we learn how to kiss in the backseat
forget our hands, 
ignore the smog behind us the
city’s many eyes              ​ workforce
long men and batons ready
for the unapologetic labor 
of correcting wildlife

but us, 
we grow like foxtails
bullets rain dry over a body
unable to hold blood,
over bodies that meet again
in the backseat whispering
little lovegrass, chanting
until light collapses into 
our hands, until wildlife
raises from my fingertips
and we know this is
the end of our running days
               as the melody of a floral lullaby
              ​ bursts from the radio, overpowering
              ​ the motor, the burning oil 
              ​ sirens howling kilometers close,
              ​ hiding the smell of gunpowder
              ​ that claws its way towards our 
              ​ little car.

so you drive us citybound
your nightshade smile, your 
kisses down the back of my hand
your solar-powered heart, 
your warm cruelty 
turned against
the burning asphalt
that trembles in wait
foresees the blood,
the final stand, the glistening 
warmth of our getaway car under vines
as you pour yourself into me 
kiss my hands until 
my fingertips overwhelm
the city               ​ ​ bury us
underneath an impossible new 


by Karina Medina

At the height of my forehead
I picked up a coca leaf
i closed my eyes
I looked at mandalas leaves.
In the rite
I took the pain
in my hands
I left it
at the root.
A tear in the soul.
I opened my eyes
like trails
I saw the river running away from me
with a dread of ancestors
those that forced me to speak
in another poem.
I am left alone
without leaves
without mandalas
without roads.

Be Quiet

by Emilio Paz

Silence is a face.
Has a cold look
That penetrates the bones.
Bones that are made of paper:
Easy to burn
Silence is a face of sand.
It melts in the hands of memory.
But it always leaves a mark.
Floral scent trail
That is confused with the stench of cemeteries:
Decomposition accompanied by classical music.
Virgilio watches over Dante’s silence.
Dante consumes Beatriz’s silence.
Beatriz is content with God’s silence.
And God?
Silently on the altar
While the priest preaches.
He preaches that is confused
With what he wanted to say
But that he never tried to say.
Silence that is a drop
That starts a river.
Rio who commits suicide in the sea.
Everything returns to one
Even the words
And silence is an eternal return.

About the Authors

Jorge Alejandro Ccoyllurpuma (b. Cusco, 1987): Poet and literary translator also known as Jorge Alejandro Vargas Prado. He has published poetry, short stories, and a novel. As a Quechua descendant, his creative work explores this ancestral Andean culture and language. 

Photo: Julio del Carpio

Victoria Mallorga Hernandez is a queer Peruvian taurus, poet, and editor. Currently, she is an associate editor at Palette Poetry and an MA candidate in Publishing and Writing at Emerson College. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Revista Lucerna, Plastico, perhappened, Anti-Heroin Chic, Kissing Dynamite, and Thin Air, among others. Across the hemisphere, she moonlights as the chief coordinator of Literature in the Alternative Art Fair (ANTIFIL) and reviews books for La Libretilla, a Hispano-American project. Victoria has published two collections in Spanish, albión (alastor editores, 2019) and absolución (2020). Find her on Instagram or Twitter as @cielosraros.

Emilio Paz (b. Lima, 1990) is a teacher of philosophy and religion, and a graduate of the Universidad Católica Sedes Sapientiae. He is the author of Septiembre en el silencio (Club de lectura poética, 2016), La balada de los desterrados ( Ángeles del Papel Editores, 2019) and Laberinto en versos (La tortuga ecuestre, n°394, 2018). He is the winner of the Marco Antonio Corcuera Foundation competition and the ninth international competition “El Parnaso del Nuevo Mundo” in the short story category. He has been published in various media in Peru, Mexico, Chile, Spain, Venezuela, USA, Argentina, India, Ecuador, Romania, Costa Rica, Sweden, Germany, Italy, Cuba, Uzbekistan, Bulgaria and France. His work has been translated into Romanian, French, Italian, Bulgarian, Uzbek, English and Tamil. He has participated in many international as well as national speaking engagements. He teaches philosophy and conducts poetry workshops. He has also published works on the relationship between poetry, aesthetics and education. He has participated in many international philosophical conferences.

Photo: Mike Paredes

Karina Joelly Medina Paico (Lima PERÚ – 1986) : Teacher, writer and editor. She studied at the Higher University of Applied Sciences (Advertising) and is currently studying Art Education at the National School of Dramatic Art. She has participated in certified dramaturgy, poetry and theater workshops dictated by the Cultural Center Spain. She has been published in the anthologies Dew of Poems (2017), Spring Verses (2017), Crystal Verses (2018) and Poetic Love (2019) of the Peruvian Society of Poets; as well as in the poetry collections The Danger of Being Alive (2018), Beside the Road (2019) and The sea doesn’t stop (2019). Her own published collections of poems are Pavo real (Ediciones Marginales – 2019) and Eterna estación (Pléyades Ediciones – 2021. She has worked as a copyreader and editor from a very young age. She is the editorial director at Pléyades Ediciones, her own company. Nowadays Karina Medina works as a researcher and compiler of Peruvian poetry. In 2021 she presented her Coral Collection project, which consists of four books of poems written by young and consecrated poets, Peruvian and Latin American. The first published Volume 1 is Ultimísima Young Poetry – 21 Peruvian female poets. Volume 2, Ultimísima Young Poetry – 21 Peruvian male poets, will be published this coming September. The other two volumes will be published in 2022.

Photo: Biblioteca Abraham Valdelomar