Poem for Plemetina

by Aleksandra Hiltmann

Tentatively, our toes touched your ground, one foot after the
other we wanted to start our journey. But then we met you.

You who swallowed us, who drowned us, who swept us away.
You, Plemetina, who immediately embraced us.

You embraced us with your smiles, your music, your generosity,
your stories. Stories that made our thoughts race.

Race as fast as the white smoke rising into the sky above you,
the one that suffocates you. You, that you rest on a soil made of
black gold that should brighten up your homes. But, while the
coal’s dust keeps falling, you often remain in darkness.

The sound of kettles hitting the surface of deep down water
hurts us, Plemetina. We don’t want you to be thirsty, we don’t
want you to miss anything, we don’t want you to have any
more sorrows.

We wanted to escape you, then, to give our minds a rest, think
about you, try to understand you. But you hardly let us. Soon,
you would take us by our hands again to take us to see and live
your beauties and joys, your songs and dances, your laughs
and hospitality.

We want to thank you, Plemetina.

Thank you for taking us by our hands and making us drown in
your soul, thank you for teaching us, for making us understand

Thank you for your warm embrace.