Ali Podrimja

(1942 - 2012 / Gjakova, Albania)

It Is The Albanian's Fault

It is the Albanian's fault
That he breathes
And walks on two legs

That I take tranquillizers
And swat flies all day
In the Toilet

It is the Albanian's fault
That he besmirches your wife
And frightens my family

That my hand cannot reach the apple
On the highest branch
That he has filled the Well with dead words

It is the Albanian's fault
That not more of Turkey exists,
More of America of Norway

That the Gulag is so far away

That they chose me and sent me
To sniff him out
Does death smell

It is all the more the Albanian's fault
That he does not eat
Or close his eyes and sleep

That our sewers are broken
And the Catacombs of the Balkans
Have fallen into ruins

It is the Albanian's fault
That he whiles away the time under the moon
And breaks windows and stirs up muddy water

That he speaks Albanian that he eats Albanian
that he shits Albanian

It is the Albanian's fault
The Albanian is the one at fault
For all my undoings

Both for my broken tooth
And for my frozen smile
So therefore: BULLET

Ha ha ha
Ha ha

May God have mercy!

Submitted: Monday, July 21, 2014

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Poet's Notes about The Poem

[Fajtor është shqiptari, from the volume Fund i gezuar, Prishtina: Rilindja 1988, translated from the Albanian by Robert Elsie, first published in English in Who will slay the wolf. Selected poetry by Ali Podrimja, New York, Gjonlekaj Publishing 2000, p. 193]

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