My Enemies

on W.S. Merwin


My enemies slide through the crowd oily as snakes


They are Death dressed in a coat of smiles


My enemies are part of the war in which they

do not care for the enemy

but kill their comrades in the trenches

My enemies continue to live

undisturbed in darkness

gently they inhale and



My enemies are suffocated by the obscurity

chasing them everywhere

upon the seven continents and

the dirt is afraid to pronounce their names

If Krakatoa erupts – those are their ovations

The shaking of Japan turns wild the cheering in their souls


My enemies without faces live inside the stone

in the speech of the water where they try to talk to eternity

before they turn into dust

My greatest enemy has many names which he goes out

in the night to practice


My enemies have never been loved

with tiny steps like Japanese prostitutes

they enter the rooms one after another


In these empty houses they are bloody clots in the corridors


My enemies all of them came out of the paper mill

where I produce matches

for their paper hearts

they are the nightmares of the people I dream about

in those nights when my soul

takes a break


My enemies in their dreams fly in the sky

the cocaine lines of the airplanes are their


My enemies pronounce words resembling worms

which dig deep in the dirt of the wasted lands

and they wander blind


In the morning the sun rises only for their half-shadows


At the end their skin will begin to bark their fingers will bloom

under the gravestones

without names




She loves to play with my feelings.

Without any obvious reason she acts insulted,

unwilling to give me any explanation.

She looks at me for hours with that air of superiority,

then she walks across the room and when I reach out

slowly, she quickly moves away.

Sometimes we do not talk for days.

I ask her what have I done to deserve this?

Was I checking out another one of her lovely sisters,

did I kick her out of my bed, or maybe because

we no longer take baths together?

Silence. She looks at me and turns her head.

She turns her back on me, too, then walks to the window

and for hours observes the trees outside.

What should I do? Well, I left it at that.

Eventually she will come to her senses. After all

she is just a stupid cat.


by Peycho Kanev

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