by Lana Derkač (translated from Croatian by Boris Gregorić)

  1. While we stand in the field, sparrows are in the bush.
  2. Their broad, popular front peeking from the branches.
  3. It almost would appear they are cheering. Following
  4. the game of football. Later you think, the followers
  5. of Marx and Engels. In fact they chirrup:
  6. Sparrows of all countries,
  7. unite, so together we can kick some football!
  8. Later still, you've got the notion they read the Bible,
  9. you are able to discern the psalms in their
  10. inchoate language, you hear them mention
  11. Moses and the team chosen.
  12. You draw attention away from the birds.
  13. Someone, with a sharp blade of grass nicks the tip
  14. of your finger making it red like a strawberry,
  15. pressing his cut finger
  16. on your blood. You are happy. It means truly
  17. he has come. A nascent brotherhood with Pan.
Packingtown Review – Vol.9, Fall 2017

Lana Derkač writes poetry, drama, and essays. Her work appears in numerous Croatian and international newspapers, magazines and anthologies. She was awarded the Zdravko Pucak Poetry Prize and Duhovno hrašće Prize in Croatia, as well as the Korean National Award for Literature by the World Academy for Art and Culture from Seoul. Her work has been translated into fifteen languages.

Boris Gregorić is a literary translator and a visual artist, and the author of nine books of prose. He has received the Hellmann-Hammett Award. His most recent publications include Kiwi broj 27, and the translation of Hippodrome by Slovene poet Miklavž Komelj (co-translator Dan Rosenberg).

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