A few weeks ago I found myself in a flashy London-apartment in Sloane Square. A number of Bulgarian people were determined to celebrate Easter by painting eggs, and then fighting with them. As a Swedish pacifist I relished the challenge, but soon found myself out battled, and slightly mocked, by a Russian friend with much more experience in egg fighting than myself. In addition to the egg painting, and fighting, numerous beers, and a particularly appalling bottle of sparkling rose, were consumed.
Before the event I had been challenged to write a poem about eggs. This being my year of failure, I naturally accepted, spending 20 minutes of Saturday morning trying to get my head around an egg. I then subsequently read it to the gathered Bulgarians, and one Spanish anarchist with wild hair. It was not my finest moment, and the awkwardness of presenting an erratically put together thought-piece on an egg in front of strangers with violent egg traditions, was challenging. But in the end, there seemed to be a general appreciation for the effort. So I thought I’d share it here as well:
Egg poem for Bulgarian Easter
You never had a home, egg. Perhaps you never expected one, always on the move, even before there was life. A Bulgarian Easter token, a canvas for over-worked people needing an output, a clean slate for other peoples’ ideas. Maybe you had bigger dreams, egg. Greater ambitions than becoming an alternative art space. But as you were transported from your mother, your life was chosen for you. We created the logistical process to get you here, our shiny example of supply and demand. But I don’t want to be an example, you might say. But this is not that kind of story. And you can’t speak, egg. This is a narrative on Goliath winning, of industrial machines, of watercolours produced by children in a Chinese village. And as we look at you, ready to unleash our uneven artistic pursuits on your bare skin, all that is left for you is to raise the hands you don’t have, and try and see the beauty in the part you play. In bringing people together. The life which could be you, will never be. You’re an Easter egg, in a flamboyant colour. The opposite part of hallelujah.
Then a friend of mine read a poem in Bulgarian, which was intense enough to send shivers through some people. Since my attempt was neither shiver friendly, or wildly intense, I gave her the victory. The Bulgarian Easter egg poem champion of 2013 victory. Next year I’m going for gold!