Boukova manages to transfuse Balkan tradition to contemporary expressive means, ,to transform inner experience to extroversive manifestation, comfortably balancing at the border between modern and postmodern. Original in their conception and execution images and a poetic force which subdues sentimentalism, these are poems that any contemporary poet would aspire to write. Stavros Zafeiriou (poet), Entefktirio journal


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Drapetomania (Excerpts)

Paradoxically, all roads end
in the unsolvable mystery of freewill.
Paradoxically, every time I find my back against the wall,
I speak in the first person.
Yesterday I saw a blind man crossing the road
while the light was red.

The most mysterious story of Borges is thought to be The Sect of the Phoenix.
He talks about a hidden community that comes from the depths of time.
Its members have taken part in all the pogroms of history.
Its members have been victims of all the pogroms of history.
They have always concealed their Secret. Nothing sets them apart from other people.

A description of the initiation does not clarify the picture:
A slave, a leper, a beggar plays the role of mystagogue.
A child can indoctrinate another child. In itself the act is trivial, momentary, and does not require description.
The necessary materials are cork, wax, or gum arabic. (In the liturgy there is mention of silt; this, too, is often used.)
There are no temples specially dedicated to the celebration of this cult; a ruin, a cellar, an entrance way are considered propitious sites.

The view is prevalent among scholars that Borges is referring to the act of intercourse. (His own unclear sexuality perhaps gives rise to this hypothesis.)

There are more eccentric versions – a religious community, structured around the use of hallucigens.

I propose humiliation.

Burnt cork, Goma ar?biga and most of all silt – things that stain.
Wax and resin – things that sticks.
Insult can be done by anyone to anyone, at any age, in any place.
It is always kept secret. Initiation is inescapable.

Only a Borges could think up a sect which all mankind secretly adheres to.

The Sect of the Disgraced.

Everything in history is rhythm.
Rhythm is the dialect of the masses.

Trotsky to the DJs

©Iana Boukova Notes of the Phantom Woman Publisher: Janet 45, Plovdiv 2018

Iana Boukova is a Borgesian type of author. She favors play, references, riddles unexpected twists, ironies, and the dramaturgy of verse. She possesses deep knowledge not just in the sphere of the humanities, in which she specialized, but she is also enticed by science, she knows a lot, and all of this is reflected in the Notes of the Phantom Woman. In the book, the intonations change harshly, the verse is cut, the rhythm - too, the tone is sharp, in some places the aphorism turns the verse into a maxim, but does she want to "cheat" us, to "check" us or to "check" ourselves, we wonder as long as we readð whether this irony not become imperceptibly sarcasm..... The reader of the book often asks himself questions, he has to question all that, to doubt, to be careful in the text, to harness his knowledgå and at the same time to fly the kite of the imagination in order to make metaphors work, in order to drive the intervals of the poem and to become an associative bridge between one verse and the next one, something like that is the mechanics of the reading here. Yana Bukova does not want to be easy, sensitive, sublime - back to the expanding ideas for writing poetry, of successful poetry, if there is such a thing at all... She wants to worry, to shake the status quo, to scare us, to startle us, she is direct at the risk of even sounding rude.

A ruthless game. By Silvia Cholevà, Ê – The journal of criticism, debate and cultural pleasures, Iss. 8, 23.11.2018

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The Bulgarian poet Iana Boukova with her book “The minimal garden”, in a very good translation into greek by Dimitris Allos, has easily gained herself a place in contemporary greek poetry, transplanting memory in all things, honoring with affection what is hurt or hunted, being able to look beyond the future into man’s adventure………..Dino Siotis, (poet), (de)kata journal

© 2019, Iana Boukova
Contact e-mail: bukova.iana(at)