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Az Shte Nosya Vashiya Dom

(Аз ще нося вашия дом)

By Haley Yordanoff
Illustration by David Petersen

Illustration by David Petersen

Illustration by David Petersen

I wanted her to be
Like the others.
The ones who cooked
Traditional Christmas dinners
And watched our favorite movies
With us

But
How can I make her
Forget the traditions
From her home?

As the years
Have climbed and life
Becomes more precious,
I have realized
How special
My roots are

She is my baba (баба).
She came here from Bulgaria
When she was only nineteen

Born with the name
Yordanka
She grew up speaking
Bŭlgarski (български)
And still does.

When loved ones abroad
Called, they always talked
For so long
And everything was
Dobre (добре),
Dobre (добре),
Dobre (добре),

She loved to spoil us
With the latest toys,
but along with them
Came rose perfumes
And Red and White

Crochets.
Although we were
Drakas (Драка)
she couldn’t
Help but give us
The world.

Now that I know
Why She is not like
The others,
She is teaching me
Her stories
Her holidays

And I’m learning
How she met grandpa
The right way to make
Banitsa (баница)
and the meaning
Of name days.

She has carried her
Home with her
For so long,
and now
That I truly know

These special roots
I’ll be there to carry
This home
When she
No longer can.


Bulgarian to English Translations

Az Shte Nosya Vashiya Dom (Аз ще нося вашия дом) I’ll carry your home
baba (баба) Grandma
Bŭlgarski (български) Bulgarian
Dobre (добре) good, or well
Drakas (Драка) troublemaker
Banitsa (баница) Bulgarian cheese pie; a layering of thin dough (filo pastry), olive oil, eggs, and cheese
 

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