Epigraph (and two other poems)

February 11, 2020 in Bosnian, Poetry by atosun

Original by Adem Garić
Translated, from the Bosnian, by Mario Frömml

 

Epigraph

In the mornings I call my mother.
Or in the afternoons, on my way back from
the mosque; the scent of blossoms rushes
through a crack in my car window.

 White tree tops line the streets
like the kind words I often miss.

It dawns Here when
Bosnia prays the zuhr.

A day is at its zenith when Their
maghrib brings it to its close.    

Time is Here a gold dust.

Prospectors all over the place pitch
their tents on the slopes of their days.

Gold, buried in the pits of time,
is running out, ever so dwindling.

I notice that the sky is blue,
and green is the grass, the soil
so wet, right after the rain. 

Thus, everything’s the same,
and — then again — nothing is.

I do not speak out of melancholy,
but for the sake of Truth.

 

Zapis

Ujutro nazovem majku
ili popodne, kad se vraćam iz džamije.
Jutrom zamiriše behar kroz otškrinut
Automobilski prozor.
Duž ulica su redovi bijelih krošnji
poput lijepih riječi koje mi često nedostaju.
U Bosni je podne kad je Ovdje jutro.
U Bosni je akšam kad je Ovdje podne.
Vrijeme je Ovdje zlatna prašina.
Kopači na sve strane razastiru šatre
Po obronicma dana.
Zlata je u jamama vremena
sve manje i manje.
Primjećujem da je nebo plavo
trava zelena, i zemlja je mokra poslije kiše.
Dakle, sve je isto, a ništa opet isto nije.
Ne kažem to radi sjete
Već radi Istine.

Screenplay  

In American movies
Russians always get defeated.
Guns lurk at every corner.
Cowboys are good guys, though may not be.
Indians play supporting roles and extras.
Except for making wars, or being fought against,
no one has been noticing ten million Muslims.
Knowledge is useful if it rakes in profits.
Everything bringing in the profits is knowledge.
Drugs are native to the concrete jungle.
Alcohol gets sipped, just like coffee.
The streets – the foundation of crimes.
White men are sheriffs. Their badges are relics
everyone venerates.
America rides while the entire world walks.
Everything in the world takes places in America.
America discovers the world.
America has an American dream.
American is the dream of
houses that the banks rent out.

 

U američkim filmovima 

 U američkim filmovima
Rusi uvijek gube.
Pištolji vrebaju iza svakog ćoška.
Kauboji su dobri, makar i ne bili.
Indijanci su sporedne uloge i stažisti.
Osim kad ratuju, ili se protiv njih ratuje
za 10 miliona muslimana se i ne zna.
Znanje je korisno ako donosi profit.
Sve što donosi profit je znanje.
Droga je u prirodi betonske džungle.
Alkohol se srče, poput kahve.
Ulice su temelj kriminala.
Bijeli čovjek je šerif. Značka je relikvija
koju svi ljube.
Amerika je na kojnu, dok cijeli svijet kaska.
Sve u svijetu se dešava u Americi.
Amerika otkriva svijet.
Amerika ima američki san.
Američki je san
kuća koju banka izdaje.

 –

February Agony 

 february snaps in
a frigid air

the heavy rains of
shells and bullets pour

across the fields
mount Udrič
echos

in the eyes of wolves
bloody pyres blaze up

while the february snaps
at the fox holes of
life and death,
she bundles her baby
up in her arms

in her armful is a baby
and the two more cling to her skirt

at the end of a
distraught single file

a soldier yells  at
the woman and her child
at her child, the infant

shut her up, he screams
shut her up;
or the icy darkness will
silence her

 

Februarska morija

od studeni
februar puca

sipaju teške kiše
granata i metaka

preko polja
Udrič
odječe

u kurjačkim očima
plamte krvave lomače

dok februar puca
tranšejima
života i smrti,
njojzi je u naramku
dojenče

u naramku joj dojenče
a, za skut’ma još dvoje

pri dnu
izbezumljene kolone

vojnik viče
na ženu i dijete
na dijete, dojenče

ušuti je, reče
ušuti je;
ili će je ušutjeti
studen veče

Adem Garić is a poet from Bosnia and Herzegovina currently living in Erie, PA. He has written two books of poetry in Bosnian, and is in the middle of translating his new book America is Hollywood.

Mario Frömml is a US-based translator who is contributing to the translation of America is Hollywood. 

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