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Ilir Kalemaj

Ilir Kalemaj

Ilir Kalemaj is a PhD at Central European University in Budapest, Hungary, continuing post-graduate studies in International Relations and a Lecturer of Political Science and European Integration at University of New York Tirana. In addition to his academic and journalistic contributions, Ilir has a cultivated passion for poetry. He has won an editor’s prize for his entry in the anthology “Memories Revisited” published in the United States with his poem “International” which is being republished in this volume. Ilir has also published a book of poetry in Albanian, “Autumn’s Love” in 2005.


I would like to dance

in a midst of an African party

wearing masks, half-nude,

feeling the beat,

the rhythm,

and the heat across my chest.

Then I would like to fly

under the infinite Asian sky

liberating my soul, heart, and mind

under the effect of the Indonesian rice wine.

Then I would live for the white tundra

in a solitary confinement,

reproaching myself differently,

maybe in a more philosophic aspect.

Returning, I would go to the Caribbean,

praying the life,

hugging the sea, kissing the sun,

and singing, singing for the humanity

far, far in infinity.


The life often appears as an unclear illusion,

wide and endless like an unending ocean,

the reality is often frightful,

that’s why we run,


in the jasmine and tulip gardens

of the imaginary life.

The life often scares us with its unending depths,

eternal moments that last forever,

like the aroma of red roses,

that bring the ecstasy of loneliness

without boredom,

of figment breathed in daily existence.

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