Selma Kopić (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Selma Kopić is a professor of Bosnian language and literature, born in 1962 in Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
She is the author of two textbooks and one workbook for primary school. She has worked and is working as a coach, reviewer, proofreader …
Her stories and poems have been awarded and entered anthologies in BiH and around the world. The most significant awards are:
• Third prize “Mak Dizdar” for unpublished collection of poems “Puzzle”, BiH, 2008;
• Golden Plaque, “Poetry of the Year 2020”, Balkan Poetry Union, BiH, 2021;
• First prize for a triptych of love poems at the “Poem above poems” competition, BiH 2021;
• First prize for the best foreign song “I’m not ready to leave yet”, Italy, 2020.
She has published three independent books of poetry:
• ”Znak” (” The Sign ”), PrinCom Tuzla,
• ” The Monument of Love”, Poetry Planet Publishing House, Philippines,
• ” Slagalica ” (”The Puzzle”), Darwish Publishing and Translation House, Germany
• and the joint collection ‘‘ Cosmic Rainbow ’’ India, with five other authors.
THE MEMORY IS STILL ALIVE
An unknown road is calling you,
from country to country,
from place to place.
How many sighs
did you leave on those quays,
how many tears
you shed on those bridges,
as you wander the world
looking for your place,
a place similar to the one
you left behind
a long time ago?
You think you left it,
but it’s wandering around with you.
You admire natural wonders,
the mountain massifs,
the reflection of the sky
on the most beautiful waterfalls.
And a living memory
doesn’t give you peace!
There is no such thing
in the city of your youth.
And you admire those beauties,
then you start the engine
and continue the journey without any joy.
Are there any alleys
with bloodied centuries-old houses anywhere,
the cobblestones echoing from your footsteps,
the mottled benches in the park
where we sat together?
You eat the specialties
of the most famous cuisines in the world,
but nothing smells
like hot pie in a casserole.
You push the plate away.
Why- no one asks anymore.
The engine is humming,
calling you to move on,
in search without end.
When will you hear a familiar voice?
Are your buddies waiting for you anywhere?
In your wanderings
there is no city
where your soul remains,
no place where you and I loved each other,
a place that calls and connects us.
And while coffee is being smoked from the cup,
fragrant and hot,
your heart is home to the city
where you left your youthful hopes.
You hum “Little Alley”
as you suffocate in tears.
YOU ARE NOT THE ONE I STILL LOVE
You’re not the one I still love.
But I love,
and I will die loving,
the image of you I loved.
It’s a picture of a wide-eyed man,
a man of the world.
It’s a picture of a man
who isn’t ashamed to love
or be romantic.
A man who pays gallantly,
who is creative,
versatile and hardworking.
It isn’t an old nagger
who is bothered by every smell,
who eats healthily.
I love a man who cooks well
and eats everything
our ancestors have always eaten.
The image of the man I love
is the image of a man
who doesn’t talk about
his conquering successes as a seducer,
who just smiles at provocative questions
and answers nothing.
He is a man who isn’t afraid
of other people’s opinions,
makes his own decisions
and is ready to bear the consequences.
It’s a man who doesn’t run away
and doesn’t hide.
And he never retreats like a coward.
You’re not the man I love.
I love the picture of you I loved.
It is a unique creation of inestimable value.
It is an image
for which it is impossible to reproduce.
All the reasons fell into the water
when I heard your voice.
Then began my final surrender,
I had no choice.
To love you, it’s like breathing air.
Longing for you is eternal hunger.
That love is a disease
for which there is no cure.
It’s sweet torment and constant pain…
And I wonder why I love you,
again, and again… But in vain.
I think of your voice and your hands
and realize, with you,
everything begins and everything ends.