Danila Stoianova
Translated from the Bulgarian by Ludmilla G. Popova-Wightman

Bilingual edition
Paper | 130pp |6" x 9"
ISBN 1-930214-081

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Love poems, written by a young girl who died of leukemia at the age of 23. Appreciation of nature, reflections on solitude, unrequited love . . .

Two months before she died, she wrote extraordinary poems about her suffering. It is remarkable that in the face of approaching death, she remained optimistic and hopeful. She saw death as a continuation of life and expected “to live in both.”

Danila Stoianova was born in Sofia in 1961. She was the daughter of Tsvetan Stoianov, a charismatic literary critic and translator. As a child, she heard the poems of Emily Dickinson and T.S. Eliot read in English and in her father’s translation. She lived in house full of books, and was often in the company of poets—friends of her parents.

Her father died suddenly in 1971. Her grandmother died soon after. Death cast its long shadow on the family. At eighteen, Danila was diagnosed with advanced leukemia. She fought the disease valiantly for five years. Then her immune system, weakened by chemotherapy, succumbed to infection. She died in Paris in 1984.


Twenty-five years after the appearance of Danila Stoianova’s book in Bulgaria, this superb bilingual edition brings one of the most authentic and original voices in Bulgarian poetry to life again. Danila left this world young and most of her lines were written in the days when she faced death.

It is worth mentioning the precise and musical translations of Ludmilla Popova-Wightman as well as her authoritative feeling for the selection and arrangement of the poems.
Edwin Sugarev

The poetry of Danila Stoianova broke open a long-walled-off window on the world. It resonates with early spring and brings the memory of the long harsh winter Bulgaria lived through. It speaks of life and death, of rebirth through the miracle of poetry.
Blaga Dimitrova

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