Poetry Travels with Anna Blasiak and Lisa Kalloo: REPORT FROM ANOTHER CITY by Marcin Niewirowicz, translated by the author

I wish the view changed and the grass was greener
for if there is a fence there is always some side and
the grass is different and the words are different on
the other side of the rainbow

– burned long ago – don’t be upset about flares
and torches don’t be upset about roses about forests
more storms’ll come and more noise please
keep mum about the grass being the same green

and the view is the same but we still have problems
with squaring the circle and choosing the words
sowing the wind and defending the field introduce
yourself nicely – what irony –

don’t squeal when a bumblebee hides in the grass
here is my street here is the river and the palace and
this is my head bowed in repentance I’ll repent –
that’s the deal

put yourself within the space of language here
is your place here is the fence and here is the frame of
steel my part will be dead never finished barely in
a form of a footnote

to the events that we’ll gloss over because
it’s so comfortable to live and quite safe but only if
I keep quiet only if I conceal myself and even if
I shout –

no one to defend me and no one to call out

By Marcin Niewirowicz

Translated by the author

by Various Authors
Edited by Jane Commane
Published by Nine Arches Press (2021)

Marcin Niewirowicz is a poet, photographer and librarian at the National Library of Poland. He was twice shortlisted for a major Polish poetry award, the Jacek Bierezin Prize (2014, 2016), and received the Artur Fryz Prize commendation (2018). His poems were featured in many prestigious literary magazines in Poland. His two volumes of poetry are: Dociekania strefy (Nisza, 2017) and Wszystkie ptaszki, które miałem w garści (Nisza, 2020).

Photo by Lisa Kalloo

Check out the Poetry Travels book list on bookshop.org.

Read previous poems from Poetry Travels:

INTERIOR by Ana Blandiana, translated by Paul Scott Derrick and Viorica Patea

THIS IS LOVE by Joanna Fligiel, translated by Anna Blasiak

REVELATION IN H&M by Menno Wigman, translated by David Colmer

*** (I WANT TO FOLD THIS DAY) by Inga Pizāne, translated by Jayde Will

THE SIEGE by Marcin Świetlicki, translated by Elżbieta Wójcik-Leese

FISH by Jana Putrle Srdić, translated by Barbara Jurša

THE WELL by Maarja Pärtna, translated by Jayde Will

THE SHADOW by Pentti Saarikoski, translated by Emily Jeremiah and Fleur Jeremiah

A FAREWELL TO MY DEAD CLASS by Irit Amiel, translated by Anna Blasiak and Marta Dziurosz

THE GIRLS IN BERGEN-BELSEN by Nora Gomringer, translated by Annie Rutherford

DECEMBER, by Jaume Subirana, translated by Christopher Whyte

ROSE RED, by Ulrike Almut Sandig, translated by Karen Leeder

*** (I D[R]IPPED MY PEN…) by Mario Martín Gijón, translated by Terence Dooley

WHAT COMES by Magda Cârneci, translated by Adam J. Sorkin and Mădălina Bănucu

TRANSLATION by Justyna Bargielska, translated by Maria Jastrzębska

*** (MY EYES, DENSE NIGHT…) by Gëzim Hajdari, translated by Ian Seed

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