Margarita Petkova

Wild Blackberry

I’m like a wild blackberry – no beauty or sweetness in me.
I’m tart, but can quench anyone’s hunger and thirst.
My roots are said to be brittle but they cling fast to the rock.
I can’t thrive on a parquet floor.
The caress of rain and sun’s warmth are quite sufficient
(and scars from the wind’s teeth – for my soul)
I’m like a wild blackberry – I give advance warning
to those who reach for me heedlessly
I’m practiced in drawing blood.
Watch out! Don’t get tangled as you carelessly turn;
there’s no tearing free.


Nine and a half weeks

He didn’t even get it; I was leaving him,
and not just jumping on the tram.
Love lay prone over the rails
but he had no way of knowing –
He’d set off with his usual sprightly step
Having measured every last second.

I groaned and my eyelids jammed shut  –
an eyelash was caught in my eye.
But I managed to hide with my messy fringe
the second before a tear broke through.
I loved him for exactly sixty six nights,
twelve hours and five minutes.


Paid announcement

Mind your own bloody business,
instead of slyly chewing over mine:
when I am strong, when I am weak,
when I am sober, when I’m smashed,
when I am laughing, when complaining,
who’s kissing me in the dark
whose shoulder gently lulls me to sleep
whose gaze watches me meet the dawn
how many sugars  I drink with my coffee
and who makes my days more bitter
are those really the devil’s fires
lighting up my greedy eyes
who do I sometimes call “darling”,
who do I wound with a smile
and after all what is the surname
of that Ivan – in my poems.
Whether in Petrich or in Varna
I’ll burn someone’ house down
I DECLARE, that everything’s true.
Take care how you swallow.


Challenged to explain

I don’t know if I love him more
than you love him,
but my fingers hide the key
to  a secret senseless destiny.
My words for him are the water of life
That has passed no-one else’s lips.
To me he comes, from you he goes.
His eyes still thirst for me.
You are his roof, I am his sky,
bewitching  with its infinity.
You are his hearth, I am his heart.
You are his duty, I am his joy.
You have born and care for his children
Me – I’m doomed to be a spinster.
You’ve got the rights on his life.
Me – the right to eternity.


Afternoon Song

As I took the air down the stern straight street,
as with sunny laughter I whistled aloud,
I stumbled on something – it was your gaze.
And I just hadn’t the guts to turn around

My startled song flew to the branches.
A little cloud hung like an old question mark.
I had forgotten you – I can’t even recall
your eyes and hair were they fair or dark.

And I stood, with fingers jabbed in pockets
The song took wings and away it fled
The graze on my knee – I fell over your glance
But I hadn’t the guts to even turn my head.


How can it end so suddenly
Something that’s hardly begun?
I will go back where I came from.
You’ll be left at full stop.
It is enormous and rounded
like the moon in the poplar tree.
Look at me how I am leaving
and don’t try to stop me, I beg you.
Even from behind I’m beautiful.
Perhaps even more so.
This suit becomes me.
And my heels ring a feminine song.
There’s no charge for looking
And the street is long.
The fingernail scrapes your eye
the edge of the first corner.
My route is exactly beyond it
And it’s a one way street
If you were to take two paces –
you’d have a chance of dot dot dot …


The Sleeping Beauty

What a princess I was, what a princess!
How the princes fell in love with me!
Carefree, frivolous, divine
thus I lived – discounting the spinning wheel.
How I conquered all, with just a look!
I was flighty and wise – everywoman.
For me men would walk through fire.
And sob in secret in their dreams
What a princess I was…Yet I was touched
By your eyes – two sharp blue points.
I took back the crown, sent guests packing
And accepted you – at one with my fate.
What are you thinking – that the past is snuffed out?
That there is an end to every woman’s madness?
Believe me – even after a hundred years
the princess in me will wake again.


Nota Bene

And I can be Medea. It figures –
I fall hard in love – from the start.
But don’t make blind bets, Aeson’s son,
Backing my passionate heart.

I will be of service – really clever
And reckless to very death.
You’ll make off with the golden fleece
And return from your trip unscathed.

No you won’t feed the voracious fish
Nor an arrow glance your back.
Scylla is weak, Charybdis – toothless …
(I am your clashing crag)

With you I’ll elope, because I want to.
Not that you’re so very grand.
I  know your weaknesses, know my advantages,
know life’s at danger’s command.

And If I take you –I will be true to you.
(I’m no soft pillow – me!)
I forgive everything, only betrayal,
I repay double.  Straight way.

You’ll lose your wits at what I can do
I’ll pull down law and the throne,
You want Medea? Here’s your Medea!
Bon voyage to Hades Jason.


Saviour’s Day

I’m stating it quite personally
Even shockingly up front:
Lord God how I love myself –
Bluntly it cannot be true!
Bluntly it’s beyond belief-
I’m back inside my own skin.
Along with moldering stations
Airports are my home.
Fear of Flying is over –
I take myself back to the skies.
To be rocked in the arms
Of unearthly gravity,

Sing my soul, birds of the sky –
Lord god, ONCE MORE I love me!


There’s not even a drop of regret in me.
There’s no vestige – either bad or cherished.
Only – that sense of deliverance.
That you’re really going to get lost.

In Pleven or in North Korea –
No matter. Be strong and healthy,
Live a hundred years yet!
So you can see how happy I am.


Who are you, to attract my flack?
But I did spell it out chummy :
Whoever lives off my back
Will one day crawl on his tummy

I marked your card – my plague and blight
How you snarled with hat in play
But I will fit you with a hat so tight
To squeeze you from today.


The bare truth

Your wife
Strips the daisies…
To disclose:
“He loves her,
He loves her not…”
In short, she knows.