Blaga Dimitrova
Translated from the Bulgarian by Ludmilla G. Popova-Wightman & Elizabeth A. Socolow

English edition
Paper | 78pp | 5.5x8.5"
ISBN 1-930214-014

June 2003
Bilingual edition
Paper | 179pp | 5.5x8.5"
ISBN 1-930214-065
$10.95 (this edition Out of Print)

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Blaga Dimitrova's lyrical poem Forbidden Sea arrived suddenly and overwhelmingly after the poet's bout with cancer. Her close encounter with death brought life into sharp focus, awoke in her eternal questions about the meaning of human existence, the magnetism of love, the mysteries and vicissitudes of human fate. The sea is present not only like a magnificent view, but also like a spontaneous rhythm, like a myth, a symbol of life, love, infinity and freedom. Freedom was lacking in Bulgaria, a totalitarian dictatorship with an iron censorship, a country where not only the sea was "forbidden," but also "words!"

Blaga Dimitrova, born in 1922, one of the most popular and loved writers in Bulgaria, was vice president of her country in the first democratic government after the fall of communism. She is the author of more than forty volumes of poetry, novels, plays, and essays. Her books have been translated into more than twenty languages. She has won the Herder Prize, the Hristo G. Danov Prize, the German Krugge Prize, and was awarded the French Medal of Merit for Freedom.

"Blaga Dimitrova can turn thought into poetry, meditation into rhythm and flavor, colors into ideas, judgment into fragrance, vision into ethical statement. Seldom has a woman's writing been at once more cerebral and more sensual. This mixture comes no doubt like visions brought on by a wound, personal and national. It is the "Black Sea"— what chaos, what revolution, what historical upheaval? Dimitrova's poetry nonetheless stretches a modest and serene smile over the abyss. The memory of this smile has stayed with me, and it is once again there in her style, sustained through adversity; a sun rising over the Black Sea, the sun of a woman's talent, one that English-speaking readers will welcome."

Julia Kristeva

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