Šalamun Tomaž:

Nations that forget their story-telling

die out. Smelling of ointment they

have direct access to the heart of the world.

They don’t bother to recreate circles

anymore, or run in

the snow, barefoot.

Nations that forget their story-telling

don’t tremble anymore under the weight of


powers, the stars they used to gaze at

are themselves. They become

the stars -

the nations that live in grace and luxury.

When they wake up, there, on their left side

lies a handsome young

Arab. The make love to him day and

night, when he dances or

speaks. They pitch their omnipotent

tent over him, the nations that

forgot their story-telling.

The nations that forget their

story-telling are simply wiped out by

passion, all their elegant and meaningless

life is absorbed in the knife

of the horsemen, of the comrades, of the people, that sent


Translated by The Author