Ars poetica

Blaga Dimitrova

· Poem of the day

Ars poetica

Write each of your poems

as if it were your last.

In this century, saturated with strontium,

charged with terrorism,

flying with supersonic speed,

death comes with terrifying suddenness.

Send each of your words

like a last letter before execution,

a call carved on a prison wall.

You have no right to lie,

no right to play pretty little games.

You simply don’t have the time

to correct your mistakes.

Write each of your poems,

tersely, mercilessly,

with blood — as if it were your last.

—Blaga Dimitrova (Selected poems)

(Poem translated from the Bulgarian by Ludmilla G. Popava-Wightman)

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