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Written by Sreten Perović

Translated from the Montenegrin by Dragan M.Vugdelić

Narrated by Bill Wolak



Slowly, slowly, leaves are fully asleep

and birds are dreaming of their first nests.

This very night not a single oak tree    

above our heads is completely sober.


It is warm here. And there is the south wind,

and lindens know of the impact of dreams

on this exquisite azure serene lake 

beside the sleepyhead ash trees.


Are you feeling there in your chest               

a speedy and innocent breathing?

Do not be afraid, the pheasant’s eye knows

that it has its own wedding crown.     


Slowly, slowly, leaves are fully asleep

and birds are dreaming of their first nests.

Let us too fall asleep in the fleece of grasses

beneath the mute rain of stars that May bequeaths.



Sreten Perović (b. 1932) is a Montenegrin poet, critic, literary historian, academician, playwright, translator, anthologist, and journalist. After earning a B.A. in Yugoslav and World Literatures, he started publishing poetry in 1949, and his first book of poetry Sounds and Distances was published in 1951. He has worked as a secondary school teacher of literature, editor-in-chief of the magazine “Susreti”, managing editor in Montenegrin publishing houses, director of the Lexicographic Institute of Montenegro, and editor of Encyclopedia of Montenegro. He has been a contributor to a range of magazines. For over half a century, Perović has been a theatre critic and a highly successful translator of poetry from Slavonic languages, mostly Macedonian poetry. Later he became editor-in chief and then the President of the Doclean Academy of Sciences and Arts, having held for a number of years the post of president of the Montenegrin P.E.N. Centre. Perović is the author of dozens of books, of which 15 are of lyric poetry. His poetry has been translated in thirty-odd languages and is included in Montenegrin and foreign anthologies. For his literary work, Perović has been granted numerous important national and prestigious international awards. These include: the highest Montenegrin award July 13th; several prestigious awards in Northern Macedonia, the International award for poetry of the European fund, the International Academy „Mihai Eminescu” (Romaia), the latter proposing him for the Nobel Literary Award, and the Naji Naaman (Lebanon) Honor Prize for complete work (2020). In 2010 he was granted the title of Outstanding Cultural Worker, which implies a financial support for life by the Montenegrin State. In 2022, President of Montenegro awarded him the Order of the Montenegrin Flag 1st degree.


Dragan M.Vugdelić (b. 1946) is a Montenegrin free lance translator. He is a retired English teacher/university lecturer, and British Honorary and Vice Consul. He was twice awarded Fulbright scholarships. His first literary translation was published in 1976. Since then, he has translated several hundred individual pieces and 17 books. In addition, he has worked on ten feature and around thirty documentary films, over twenty TV programs (plays, short feature films, documentaries), and he has published numerous artists’ catalogues, and parts of four monographs. Also, he writes short stories, poems, anecdotes, and aphorisms with five books published. He is the winner of the Grand Award for literary translations, several minor awards and prizes as well as the Naji Naaman (Lebanon) Creativity Prize (2018).



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