Katica Kulavkova (Macedonia)

Katica Kulavkova

Katica Kulavkova (Macedonia – Veles, 21/12/1951) is a poet, literary theorist and hermeneut. Professor at the Department of general literature and comparative, Faculty of Philology “Blaze Koneski” in Skopje. She tien education theory and methodology of literature, literary hermeneutics, creative writing, theory of Intertextuality, etc. Elected full member of the Academy of science and Art in May 2002. Vice President of PEN International and Director of the collection “Diversity” (www.diversity.org.mk). It has initiated and led several Republican and international research projects in the field of literary theory, methodology, hermeneutics, and the development of higher education. She has published twenty books of poetry, a book of short fiction, a poetic ritual drama, more than monographs, collections of essays, and more edited chrestomathies. We are only a selective part of his publications:


  • 1975. Annunciation. Skopje: Misla.
  • 1978. Nu. Skopje: Makedonska kniga.
  • 1981. Our voiceless. Skopje: Misla.
  • 1984. New sweat. Skopje: Misla.
  • 1989. Wild Pansy (in option). Skopje: Misla.
  • 1989. Thirst: lascivious songs. Skopje: Misla.
  • 1993. Domino. Kumanovo: Potkozjachki sredbi.
  • 1998. Prelude (in option). Skopje:: Detska radost.
  • 2000. Entre-Monde. Skopje: Tri.
  • 2003. Blind angle, Skopje: Cultura.
  • 2008. Thin ice. Skopje: Makavej.
  • 2009. Erato. Bitola: Mycenae.
  • 2010. The naked eye / Niked Eye. Skopje: Poetiki (six languages).
  • 2011. Cleared spaces. Skopje: Blesok (EvaTas Edition).
  • 2011. Rekindle. Skopje: please.

Poetic drama:

  • 1997. Expulsion of evil. Skopje: Cultura.
  • 2000. Expulsion of evil. Trois-Rivières: Forges Editions.

Stories (short fiction)

  • 1989. Another time. Skopje: Cultura.
  • 2006. Autopsy. Skopje: Tri.

Theory, Hermeneutics:

  • 1984. Figurative speech in the Macedonian poetry. Skopje: Nasa kniga.
  • 1987. The not and the recession. Skopje: Makedonska kniga.
  • 1989. Specificities of lyric. Skopje: Nasa kniga.
  • 1992. Desire for the system (choice). Skopje: Makedonska kniga.
  • 1996. Venture and the results. Skopje: Cultura.
  • 1997. Stone of temptation. Skopje: Misla.
  • 1997. Carnets. Skopje: menorah.
  • 1999. Literary theory – introduction. Skopje: Cultura.
  • 2001. Small literary theory. Skopje: Tri.
  • 2006. Hermeneutic identities. Skopje: Makedonska riznica.
  • 2009. Demon interpretation. Skopje: MANU.
  • 2009. The pleasure in the interpretation. Skopje: Makavej.
  • 2012. The temptations of Macedonian and other tests. Skopje: MANU.
“I know not what confession is, a true one.
Something drives me
to invent
to exaggerate
to withhold
to add
to rearrange
to change
yet, the hoof of dying paws at me
and I am not hiding
that my drives are flowing
in all directions, even now,
to the left, to the right,
out of their berth
rising like well-kneaded dough
like shaken champagne
Every night I wait to hear
God’s voice between the lines
not to forget the dream
before I’ve remembered it
(my memory has overflowed
it shot up, it boiled over
a volcano cannot measure up
a fiery force of nature flows)
– a kingdom for a good poem –
I forfeit consolation even
so long as verse by verse, the verses
are prompted to me
by That One, there Beyond
The Cherry Orchard”.
Each Morning
The day and the night
when setting up boundary marks, in delirium
return each other their bodies:
proof is the sperm splashed
in the semi-sky, semi-earth
(wake up, get excited
tomorrow around 4 am
go outside in the open
and have a look!)
The day dawns alone
like every experienced lover
– as if nothing (though everything) has happened
at the same time
within them echoes the sultry sexual speech
of his host’s
and of her hostess’s
In the morning the mountains should be licked
generously, tickling, from within
Along the saddles, the passes, the peaks.
God-given tongues we have
for the heavens and the earth
under, over, in front and after
the inhaling should be deep, so as
to alleviate the gush of the daytime silence beforehand
until our next meeting with the nocturnal grammar.
The day and the night are doing it
all day and night, as decreed by the house code
of conduct – the Time.
Another will write your autobiography.
Someone who will pretend to be you.
He will enter your consciousness
He will crawl under your skin
he will drift into the intimate zone
and hop, one day, he will succeed in
in putting together that which you had put asunder
in rewriting that which you had erased
in digging up that which you had buried
deep within, with a mad mind of an avalanche
in revealing that which you had banned
from public use;
He’ll untangle and then again
entangle the sign-cords of your personal
and of the Macedonian syndrome
he’ll fool around with the transformations
from antiquity to futurity
from the personal to the collective
he’ll transform the sophisticated expressions
and poetic evocations into existential imagery
to eloquently capture the juiciness
of your primeval nightmares
of your childhood reveries
of your destined digressions;
Perhaps he’ll surpass you
aided by the innate sense for acting
for playing the role of the other
for losing his self in the other
as if consumed by the nothingness.
The border between the world of the other
and the personal world – fades away.
The charm of the invisible will besiege him
and here he will truly start resembling you;
He’ll rummage the letters, the poems, the interviews
he’ll interview your contemporaries, those who have survived
he’ll reread their memoirs and journals
he’ll tread on the edges
he’ll be glancing left and right,
maintaining balance in order to reach the end
ceaselessly averting the possibility if,
God forbid, he should fall down
somewhere half way, just like you.

[1] In reference to William Shakespeare’s “A horse, a horse! My kingdom for a horse!” in Richard III (Act-V, Scene-IV).

[2] A subversive interpretation of the role of the prompter as divine voice in any theatre play (thereby in poetry and in the arts in general), but here Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard is pointed out.

[3] “Semi-sky, semi-earth” (half-sky, half-earth; part-sky, part-earth; the space between, bordering earth and sky), but in Macedonian the word „пол“ /pol/ besides meaning “half, part, semi-” as a prefix, by itself it also means “pole”(opposite poles, +,-, South/North Pole) and “sex” (being male or female), so the verse in original („на пол-небо, на пол-земја“) could also carry these layers of meaning.

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