Live Encounters Poetry & Writing, Volume One, December 2020.
Alisa Velaj was born in 1982 in the port town of Vlora, Albania. She was shortlisted for the annual international Erbacce-Press Poetry Award in UK in June 2014. Her works have appeared in more than 100 print and online international magazines in Europe, UK, USA, Australia etc. Velaj’s poetry book “Dreams” is published by Cyberwit Press in India. Besides English, her poems have also been translated into Hebrew, Swedish, Romanian, French, and Portuguese. Her poetry collection With No Sweat At All is scheduled for publication by Cervena Barva Press in November 2020.
Translated from Albanian by Arben P. Latifi
Right at this Instant of Sunshine
Right at that instant
when the sun happens to be shining,
quit partway whatever it is you are doing,
even if it be love, right at that instant!
Hurry outdoors and enjoy the sights.
Trees look prettier,
skies feel nearer,
while something yet unnamed
is coming aboard the approaching train.
Walk up to the station platform, wait for it,
and, if nothing comes your way,
smile sweetly to a kid just getting off.
Tell a depressed elderly lady she looks gorgeous!
Right at that instant of sunshine,
forget about love for just a bit.
Breathe in an otherworldly brand of air,
with invisible butterflies gracing your gaze.
A melancholy…you feel like crying.
Cry, cry right at that instant
when the sun happens to be shining!
Head back home, afterwards,
where love is waiting for you—thirsty,
as parched land for your rain of joy!
Inspired by a FB post by Natasha Spahiu
A snowman and three women going crazy around him!
(Each one dazzled by the white glitter).
The first had disowned waters without having seen them.
She comes around the man,
sniffing the carrot that stands for his nose.
“Ah, my little sun, my little sun!” she croons.
(To the carrot, of course).
The second, abandoned by a booming forest,
a whitish complexion under pale sunlight,
sets her imagination aflame
how to drag this snowman to bed!
(She once lurked on a river’s flow,
with no catch to take to the bank).
The third—from the same habitat,
(of the other two women and her own old hubby)
has forever fled from all excitement.
Her Venus, not in the least a rocky relief,
(dozing off by waters on this or that side)
fancies the snowman as a lily flower
and the carrot ̶ as its stalk stemming up,
like a slice of sun…
Ah, three women, plots of barren land,
surrounding a poor man!
It is cold, it’s so cold.
Snow flakes start falling on the carrot.
(Exactly the kind of snow that never stops…)
© Alisa Velaj