Mr. Robin Dies Of Pneumonia

(About the Irish Conquerors of North America)

12 hours daily for 50 years, without even seeing the sun,
in meat factories and mines, repairing other peoples trousers,
only to drink himself unconscious every Saturday,
and later getting sober during Sunday mass at St.Patricks,
and on Monday working again, without seeing the sun,
trying to convince himself that one day everything will change,
and in the end taking apart an old chest of drawers,
and taking out a bundle of bank-notes and giving them
to his surprised wife, who will say, that one could travel to Honolulu
for that money or at least buy two pigs, but now there’s no reason
to do that, she could have married the local doctor, but made
a mistake and chose, how stupid, this rascal, slow-witted Robin
and wasted her life instead of buying two pigs, and now he will
desert her, and did such a life have any meaning at all?

Translated from Polish by the author and Malcolm Sinclair

Grzegorz Wróblewski was born in 1962 in Gdansk and grew up in Warsaw, Poland.
Since 1985 lives in Copenhagen. He has published seven volumes of poetry and
a collection of short prose pieces in Poland, three books of poetry, a book of poetic prose
and an experimental novel (translations) in Denmark, and selected poems in Bosnia-
Herzegovina (Mostar 2002). He has also published a selection of plays. His work has
been translated into five languages.

English translations of his poems have appeared in London Magazine, Poetry London,
Magma Poetry, Parameter Magazine, Poetry Wales, The Delinquent, Chicago Review,
3rd bed, Eclectica, Mississippi Review, Absinthe, Common Knowledge,
Practice: New Writing + Art, The Mercurian – A Theatrical Translation Review,
Exquisite Corpse, Jacket Magazine,

and in anthologies:
Altered State: The New Polish Poetry (Arc Publications, Todmorden, UK 2003),
Carnivorous Boy Carnivorous Bird (Zephyr Press, Brookline, USA 2004),
A Generation Defining Itself – In Our Own Words (MW Enterprises, USA 2007).
Selected poems: Our Flying Objects (Equipage Press, Cambridge, UK 2007).

© 2008 Underground Voices