Yello Marko by Marko Tomaš – translated by Rachael Daum

Yellow Marko
fall day
and a gerber cloud
pregnant with joyous rain.
Because there is no winter in the Mediterranean
and January is just a fall
month moaning.
But you have to live, as they say,
leastwise according to an obsolete calendar.
Thus you must properly learn to slaughter,
holding fast to scriptures,
to satisfy their export standards.
Like Cioran
I want to be explained
solely in negations.
I have the croup of a horse.
I am the negation of a man
God conceived of
and my parents reared.
I am the negation of God
and thus my own parent.
I wander from bar to bar.
I shove my middle finger
into the eye of the security camera.
It isn’t easy being yellow.
Yellow as old paper.
Old as the future,
all out of fashion.
When I fall asleep I snore.
I rarely dream.
But once I dreamt of an umbrella.
Once I imagined a new brand-new universe.
I stuffed stars into my pockets.
They clinked like the teeth of a man
shivering from winter.
Because of that umbrella
from that first dream
once I loved the rain
I loved it falling.
If nothing else
I wrote my own horoscope.
I was the bearded carpenter
and played at being the prophet
and told people all this
because I want to be destroyed
and resurrected.
Marko Tomaš was born in Ljubljana, Slovenia, in 1978, and was educated in what is present-day Bosnia and Serbia. He has published nine collections of poetry in Bosnia, Croatia, and Serbia, the most recent of which is 39th May published in June 2018, and a collection of essays entitled Pisma s juga (Letters from the South) in April 2019. His works have been translated into Italian, German, French, and English. Tomaš currently lives and works in Zagreb, Croatia.

Rachael Daum works as the Communications and Awards Manager of the American Literary Translators Association. She received her BA in Creative Writing from the University of Rochester and MA in Slavic Studies from Indiana University, and Certificates in Literary Translation from both institutions. Her original work and translations have appeared in EuropeNow Journal, Two Lines Journal, Queen Mob’s Teahouse, The Airship Daily, and elsewhere. She currently lives and works in Belgrade, Serbia.