Diálogos continues its exploration of contemporary Serbian poetry with the launch, this coming August, of sympathy for the salami, a selection of Belgrade’s punk-inspired, brutally honest and beautifully lyrical, Milena Marković, translated by Steven Teref & Maja Teref. Susanna Lang says of the collection, “Whether she is describing wild parties or delirium tremens, a love affair or her grandfather grabbing his granddaughters behind the house, even her ambivalent feelings toward the disabled son to whom she gave birth when she was not much more than a child, she remains fearless.”

The book will launch in early August, 2024. Preorder, sale pricing runs through July 31. And if this sounds interesting, check out some of our other Serbian-language offerings here.

In the meantime, here’s the opening salvo of sympathy for the salami:

fuck your cv

my name is milena marković I was born in
zemun one april morning my mother
managed to cook breakfast for my sister and brother I tumbled out
headfirst and I was a good baby
my room was small and divided by a wardrobe into
male and female sections I remember my crib with
netting and the grown-ups came and went till
someone picked me up and changed me then I was dry and
my father smiled at me and when we went to the countryside
my father drove fast downhill as if we were in a toboggan
I had never experienced anything
so thrilling except briefly when I got drunk
before everything started spinning I went with
my brother on long walks by the river across
a bridge into the city once I hennaed
my hair and it rained and red water washed down
my neck and an older boyfriend
kissed me at the bus stop and smiled and smelled
of tobacco and dope and there was an old furnace in the woodshed
where I was sitting for hours and there was even an unhorsed carriage
and then I would lie down on the grass and I watched
people ice fishing and the sky of a poplar and the sky
the plum orchard was there and a cornfield and a very cold river and
silver trout and I gave birth prematurely
and breastfed for two years and he was nowhere
near to talking and he ran and ran all the time
and I lived alone in an apartment overlooking
the roofs and I cooked and laughed and ran and
fell and survived my name is milena
marković and I grew up in new belgrade
then I went to the đeram farmers market and then
I returned to new belgrade quite possibly
I’ll stay there till the end
I don’t know how to ride a bicycle and I don’t know
how to drive a car and I have difficulty with math and I know
very few things and I know that by the end
I’ll learn even less.