A Wisp of Smoke

Come closer – and our shoes will touch like this, 
and sniffing, rub wet noses in caress. 
Come! Let’s explore the flavor of a kiss. 
And maybe on your shoulder I could rest

my head? Just listen as the season lingers 
down rooftops – and the world is melting south, 
and with it, I, frost biting at my fingers, 
dissolve into the sweetness of your mouth.

Come close. Our silhouettes will look the same 
as sparrows in the winter shades of clear. 
Will it be love? Let’s find a different name - 
a title less imposing and severe.

Our habitation of the moment’s weather 
snow crashing from a roof will interrupt; 
away will fly emotion, silent feather - 
a wisp of smoke above the mint tea cup.

                                                                    - translated by Diana Stefanova


Maria Doneva has won several awards from prestigious national poetry competitions in Bulgaria. She is the author of Farewell to the Reader (1996, 2003), The Void Between Us (Ohrid, 2005), Reason To Fear (2005, 2007, 2008), The Enticement of Meaning, Fifty Years of Puppet Theater in Stara Zagora (2008), Soft Sun (2010) and Shop for Round Pebbles (2011), Feather of Smoke (2012). She also writes plays for the Geo Milev Drama Theater in Stara Zagora. She has worked as a reporter since February 1, 2010.