NEU! Boots Supplementary (1) – Georgi Gospodinov

God of Berlin
(Translated from the Bulgarian by Tom Phillips)

God of Berlin
of the Berlin clouds
and its sky
God of the Berlin wind
of the Berlin rain
which falls plumb straight
and its fog
God of the early dark
in November, of Sundays
and of empty streets
God of the blossoming
crocus beside Halensee
at February’s end
God of the late
Willmersdorf widows
(blue hair and silk)
survivors of bombardment
exhausted by the peace
in which they have to rest
God of the wedding cakes
at the end of the Ku’damm
of the biscuit newlyweds
and egg-white cherubs
God or Allah (as they call you)
of pitta breads
buttermilk and kebabs
God of the new Turkish quarters
their satellite dishes
the old Turks on benches
more there than here
– the new Jews of Kreuzberg
God of the Chinese women with tulips
only 2.50 for ten
God of mass consumption
(I spotted you on Stuttgarterplatz)
God of bargains
crockery cleavers saucepans
Chinese pots for Turkish coffee
blood pressure monitors knives shawls
and cigarette lighters
Lord Buddha and Shiva
of the Indian shops
in front of Zoologischer garten
God of Alexanderplatz
occupied by cranes
God of the Wall
which fell and didn’t fall
God of the great circle
the kitsch – in history
the history – in kitsch
God of Madonna and the child
who stuck up her poster
but will miss the concert
God of the mothers and
God of the new-born
Babies’ God
Baby-God

be merciful to us
the ranks beneath your heaven

*

Боже на Берлин

на берлинските облаци
и на небето му,
Боже на берлинския вятър,
на берлинския дъжд,
който пада отвесно,
и на мъглите му,
Боже на ранния мрак
през ноември, на неделите
и на празните улици,
Боже на разцъфтелите
минзухари край Халензее
в края на февруари,
Боже на закъснелите
вдовици от Вилмерсдорф
(сини коси и коприна),
оцелели от бомбардировките,
уморени от мира,
в който трябва да се умира,
Боже на сватбените торти
в края на Ку’дам,
на бисквитените младоженци,
ангелчета от белтък,
Боже или Аллах (както ти викат)
на арабските хлябове,
на айрана и дюнера,
Боже на новите турски квартали,
сателитните им антени,
старите турци по пейките –
повече там по-малко тук –
новите евреи на Кройцберг,
Боже на китайките с лалетата,
само 2,50 за десет,
Боже на ширпотребата
(мернах те на Щутгартерплац),
Боже на евтинията,
порцелани сатъри тенджери,
китайски джезвета за турско кафе,
апарати за кръвно, ножове, шалове
и запалки,
Боже, Буда и Шива
на индийските магазини
пред Zoo,
Боже на Александерплац,
окупиран от кранове,
Боже на Стената,
която падна и не падна,
Боже на великия кръговрат
кичът – в история,
историята – в кич,
Боже на Мадона и младенеца,
който лепи афиша й,
но ще пропусне концерта,
Боже на майките и
Боже на новородените,
бебешки Боже,
Боже-бебе,

бъди милостив към нас,
поредните под небето ти.

*

Tom Phillips is a writer based in Bristol, and is the author of several
pamphlets of poetry and the full-length collections Recreation Ground (Two
Rivers Press, 2012) and Unknown Translations (Scalino,2016). Plays include
Coastal Defences, 100 Miles North of Timbuktu and the solo show I Went To
Albania. He is an editor of Balkan Poetry Today and Raceme.

Georgi Gospodinov is a Bulgarian poet, writer and playwright. His four
poetry collections have all won national literary prizes. The first,
Lapidarium (1992), won the National Debut Prize. A selection of his poetry
was published in translation in A Balkan Exchange (Arc, 2007), edited by
W.N. Herbert.

Gospodinov became internationally known with his Natural Novel, which was
published in 21 languages, including English (Dalkey Archive Press, 2005).
And Other Stories (2001), a collection of short stories, came out in German,
French, English, and Italian, and was longlisted for the Frank O’Connor
Award. His second novel, Physics of Sorrow (2012), won the National Award
for Best Novel of the Year 2013 and the 2016 Jan Michalski Prize for
Literature.

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