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The Story of Those Without Motherland by Salome Benidze

Featuring: Salome Benidze, Helen Mort, Jean Sprackland

Salome Benidze’s poems often simultaneously address the hardships and changes in Georgia, unprecedented since the Second World War. Her poem ‘The Story of Those Without Motherland’ conveys the pain of mass emigration in the form of a letter to a young man who has probably never known or experienced love for his homeland. He is the son of an emigrant and sees his parents’ country only through the eyes of the poet. The poet laments that not everything is as fine as it should be:

my motherland is a Venus fly trap

which eats us down to our skeletons

and spits out what it can’t digest

Nevertheless ‘the worst is death under a different flag’.

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