Uspomene / Успомене / Memories

Vesna Cvjetićanin moved to Australia from Yugoslavia in 1990, and has recently found a great amount of expression and solace through poetry.  She is currently writing a book of poems exploring her migration, identity, personal and family history, as well as love, parenthood and the nature of life, called “15 Lines of Thoughts”.

This poem won Vesna first place in the Horse Rider international Serbian language poetry competition earlier this year, beating out more than 200 poems from over 90 other poets from all corners of the Serbian diaspora around the world.  It was written in Serbian, Vesna’s mother tongue, and is provided in both Serbian scripts (Latin and Cyrillic), as well as an English translation (kindly provided by Vesna and Dunja Cvjetićanin), below.


Krpim uspomene,
pa ih štirkam,
kao čipke.
Pažljivo ih slažem
pod varljivi
jastuk sadašnjosti,
da ću danas, iznova,
istkati neku novu krpicu,
i nemarno je zagubiti,
Pa je posle, iskidanu,
opet tražiti,
negde, u
zapećku života.


Крпим успомене,
Па их штиркам,
као чипке.
Пажљиво их слажем
под варљиви
јастук садашњости,
да ћу данас, изнова,
исткати неку нову крпицу,
и немарно је загубити,
па је после, искидану,
опет тражити,
негде, у
запећку жибота.


I patch up my memories,
then starch them,
like lace.
I place them carefully
amongst the mischievous linen
of the here and now,
unaware that
I will create new lace,
and carelessly misplace it, too,
and later, looking for it again,
find it ripped and ragged,
in the forgotten attic
of my life.

© Vesna Cvjetićanin, 2018