Vasko Popa

Vasko Popa Poems

Sing little box

Don't let sleep overtake you
The world's awake within you


Some bite from the others
A leg an arm or whatever

Take it between their teeth

Once upon a time there was a mistake
So silly so small
That no one would even have noticed it

We raise our arms
The street climbs into the sky
We lower our eyes
The roofs go down into the earth

Shut one eye then the other
Peek into every corner of yourself
See that there are no nails no thieves
See that there are no cuckoo's eggs

Give me back my rags

My rags of pure dreaming
Of silk smiling of striped foreboding

Unquiet you walk
Along the rims of my eyes

On the invisible grating

Look here's that uninvited
Alien presence look it's here

A shudder on the ocean of tea in the cup

Someone hides from someone else
Hides under his tongue
The other looks for him under the earth

Nobody rests

This one constantly shifts his eyes
Hangs them on his head

Don't box down to the little box
Which supposedly contains everything
Your star and all other stars

Don't open the little box
Heaven's hat will fall out of her

Don't close her for any reason

Just come to my mind
My thoughts will scratch out your face

Just come into my sight

From the wrinkle between my brows
You watch till day breaks
On my face

Get out of my walled infinity
Of the star circle round my heart
Of my mouthful of sun

Enough chattering violets enough sweet trash
I won't hear anything know anything
Enough enough of all

Green gloves rustle
On the avenue's branches

The evening carries us under its arm

The nights are running out of darkness

Steel branches grasp
The arms of passers-by

We'll return the little box
Into the arms
Of her inconspicuously honest properties

Until her last breath she enlarges
Her Oxford house
Built in Slavonic
Vowels and consonants

Vasko Popa Biography

Popa was born in the village of Grebenac, Vojvodina, Serbia. After finishing high school, he enrolled as a student of the Faculty of Philosophy at the Belgrade University. He continued his studies at the University of Bucharest and in Vienna. During World War II, he fought as a partisan and was imprisoned in a German concentration camp in Bečkerek (today Zrenjanin, Serbia). After the war, in 1949, Popa graduated from the Romanic group of the Faculty of Philosophy at Belgrade University. He published his first poems in the magazines Književne novine (Literary Magazine) and the daily Borba (Struggle). From 1954 until 1979 he was the editor of the publishing house Nolit. In 1953 he published his first major verse collection, Kora (Bark). His other important work included Nepočin-polje (Field of No Rest, 1956), Sporedno nebo (Secondary Heaven, 1968), Uspravna zemlja (Earth Erect, 1972), Vučja so (Wolf's Salt. 1975), and Od zlata jabuka (The Golden Apple, 1978), an anthology of Serbian folk literature. His Collected Poems, 1943–76, a compilation in English translation, appeared in 1978, with an introduction by the British poet Ted Hughes. On May 29, 1972 Vasko Popa founded "The Literary Municipality Vršac" and originated a library of postcards, called Slobodno lišće (Free Leaves). In the same year, he was elected to become a member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts. Vasko Popa is one of the founders of Vojvodina Academy of Sciences and Arts, established on December 14, 1979 in Novi Sad. He is the first laureate of the Branko’s award (Brankova nagrada) for poetry, established in honour of the poet Branko Radičević. In the year 1957 Popa received another award for poetry, Zmaj’s Award (Zmajeva nagrada), which honours the poet Jovan Jovanović Zmaj. In 1965 Popa received the Austrian state award for European literature. In 1976 he received the Branko Miljković poetry award, in 1978 the Yugoslav state AVNOJ Award, and in 1983 the literary award Skender Kulenović. In 1995, the town of Vršac established a poetry award named after Vasko Popa. It is awarded annually for the best book of poetry published in Serbian language. The award ceremony is held on the day of Popa’s birthday, 29 June. Vasko Popa died on January 5, 1991 in Belgrade and is buried in the Aisle of the Deserving Citizens in Belgrade’s New Cemetery.)

The Best Poem Of Vasko Popa

The Admirers Of The Little Box

Sing little box

Don't let sleep overtake you
The world's awake within you

In your four-sided emptiness
We turn distance into nearness
Forgetfulness into memory

Don't let your nails come loose

For the very first time
We watch sights beyond this world
Through your keyhole

Turn your key in our mouths
Swallow words and numbers
Out of your song

Don't let your lid fly open
Your bottom drop

Sing little box

Vasko Popa Comments

Constance Steckel 12 December 2011

Popa should be better known in America. Such a powerful poet.

16 5 Reply
Constance Steckel 12 December 2011

Vasco Popa is a major poet. And should be more famous!

16 3 Reply
sndkjqwhid 03 March 2021

i cant find your poem pig

0 0 Reply
Sylvester Molise 01 August 2018

I wanna search popa apparel poems

2 0 Reply
Bhargav 10 November 2017

genius poet

4 0 Reply
Bhargav 10 November 2017


3 0 Reply
Roger Mckeon 10 June 2014

It's not transaction, it's translation.

5 0 Reply

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