Two Poems by Bojan Krivokapić

This is part of our feature on Poets and Power: Language of Resilience from Central and Eastern Europe

Translated from the Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian by Mirza Purić


not my children

beggars at my door
I’m not opening
the spyhole is a safe space
a worldview
in my fridge
fungi and mould
I devour the remnants
of what I’d stored
I stock up
Immersed in insatiability
and hunger
mothers and their children
eat from my skip
and some other kids
and their dead cats
through the spyhole
I observe the world of the living
one eye suffices
for the world of the dead
beggars knock on my door
they wait politely in silence
kindly questions stay
I get away from the spyhole
turn my head away
I never open
they’re somebody’s children
they’re nobody’s children
they’re not my children

Novi Sad, 2013

yesterday at a public discussion on freedom of speech
a fascist, flanked by two others,
quite quietly yet quite clearly
said the end was nearing
the people were upset
the crowd stirred up
same old familiar faces
some spoke, others yelled,
the fascist just smiled
for he knew the state
was on his side
they make lists, change boards and plaques
kill dogs and cats
send beggars to jail
eat breakfast with presbyters and archbishops
call the city the athens of serbia
they count
they kill
for they know the people
are on their side
In Neukölln, where there are no trains
a man sits by the window
of a left-wing café
that’s so trendy these days
that’s quite all right these days
lefting it up in all manner of ways
but the man was merely there for coffee
and to look through the window
at the corner of
Weserstr. and Wildenbruchstr.
And to try to believe
that he truly left.



Bojan Krivokapić was born in 1985. He holds a degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Novi Sad. He is the author of Run, Lilith, Daemons Trip and Stumble (short prose, 2013) and The Flight of the Cockroach (poetry, 2014). His works have won several prizes in the former Yugoslavia, and have been translated into Italian, German, Albanian and English. He lives in Novi Sad.

Mirza Purić translates literature from German, Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian, and plays angry minimalist music in Gudron. He serves as an editor-at-large with Asymptote and does a lot of pro bono work for writers and poets who operate outside of the mainstream. In 2015, a piece he translated was nominated for a Pushcart prize.  

Photo: Bojan Krivokapić, Private
Photo: Mirza Purić, Private


Published on March 1, 2017.


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