Petja Heinrich: And All The Indians


the other day Uncle Manfred passed away
may heaven’s light shine on him!
let the weather he forecasts
always be nice—

he was a retired meteorologist
celebrated his birthdays
year after year
with a folk orchestra and buffet
in the banquet hall of the school
(I have a photo where I dance in a sack
on his 65th
in 1995)
in the town of
where everyone knows one another

actually this is the birthplace of Karl May

but the two of them would hardly sit at the same table
though there was a certain likeness
in the eyes and the flat forehead

Uncle Manfred wasn’t keen on
stories about Indians
Winnetou—he would say with disgust
and shake his head

at his funeral it rained
then the guests ate
and left

on horses

Author: Petja Heinrich

Translator: Katerina Stoykova

Season of Delicate Hunger

from the anthology Season of Delicate Hunger (ed. Katerina Stoykova), Accents Publishing 2014

Petja Heinrich

Petja Heinrich was born in Sofia. She graduated from journalism at the Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”. Since the mid-’90s she works as a freelance journalist for various Bulgarian media. She is the author of several books of poetry, among others: 01 (2008), Said with Poetry (2010), Says Mary (2011), Lotus (2014), Lima (2017). She is also the editor-in-chief and publisher of NO Poezia, a literary journal devoted to poetry. Petja Heinrich lives with her family in Düsseldorf (Germany) since 1996.

Katerina Stoykova

Katerina Stoykova is the author of poetry books in English and Bulgarian, most recently Second Skin (ICU, 2018, Bulgarian) and the bilingual Bird on a Window Sill (Signs, 2017, English and Bulgarian). The Bulgarian edition of How God Punishes was published by ICU in 2014 and won the Ivan Nikolov National Poetry Prize. Katerina is the editor and the main translator of The Season of Delicate Hunger: Anthology of Contemporary Bulgarian Poetry (Accents Publishing, 2014). For six years she hosted the literary radio show Accents on WRFL 88.1FM. In 2010, Katerina launched the independent literary press Accents Publishing. Katerina co-wrote the independent feature film Proud Citizen, directed by Thom Southerland, and acted in the lead role.

Photo credit: Accents Publishing; Katerina Stoykova

This blog post is part of #BulgarianLiteratureMonth.

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