2 Poems by Novica Tadic
translated by Steven Teref and Maja Teref

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The Serbian poet Novica Tadić has made a career of thirty-plus years
showcasing a menagerie of the grotesque seemingly not rooted in any
recognizable reality.  A reductive way of looking at his work would be
to call it a dark Surrealism.  The American poet Charles Simic once
said that the only way to write realistically about the Balkans is
through Surrealism.  When asked what accounted for Tadić's dark
visionary work Tadić claimed his greatest influence was Communism.

The bulk of Tadić's work does not read as political poetry in any
overt sense due to his intricate system of estranging metaphors.  His
manner of writing allowed his work to largely exist under the radar of
Communist censorship in the former Yugoslavia.  This system of
monstrous signifiers became widely applicable to any oppressive force
in what is now Serbia, whether it was through Milošević's
mismanagement or NATO's bombing campaign.  Tadić's verse is a poetry
of resistance of the first order, subtle in its attack.

The Cat /Мачка

Masks /Маске

*original Serbian titles in italics