Your life so well imprisoned,
So fitly and fearlessly enfolded
With the twisted leaves of an onion
Immolated, ah! its soul
With the final mysteries
When the knifes blade shone
Your moist heart
Blunted from fictive eruditions.
The tears of Eurydice in the kitchen
Have no other reason
Else than the fact
That you are the only lachrymatory ingredient
In the ordinary family salad.
Translation by Elvana Zaimi-Tufa
AGRON TUFA was born in Suhadoll in the Dibra region of eastern Albania in 1967. He studied literature at the University of Tirana. He continued his studies in Moscow in the 1990s where he graduated in translation theory, with particular concentration on the work of Joseph Brodsky. Since his return to Albania, he has been involved in the literary magazine E për-7-shme (Suitable) and edited the much-admired periodical Aleph. He is now editor of the literary supplement FjalA (The Word) and teaches literature at the University of Tirana. Tufa has published poetry and prose of note. He is the author of the verse collections Aty te portat Skée, 1996 (There at the Scaean Gates); and Rrethinat e Atlantidës, 2002 (The Surrounding of Atlantis); the novels Dueli, 2002 (The Duel); and Fabula rasa, 2004 (Fabula Rasa). He has also translated many Russian authors, among whom Joseph Brodsky, Anna Akhmatova, Osip Mandelshtam, Boris Pasternak, Andrei Platonov, Mikhail Bulgakov, Vladimir Nabokov, and Vladimir Sorokin.