Skënder Rusi, the revered poet from Korça, adorned his verses with an abundance of love and passion for his enchanting city. 

His lyrical poetry remains as immortal as the city of love itself, Korça.

“ The sky above awaits each of us,
We have known this since birth!
Those shoes are only worn once,
Except this moment when you started to run away!”
~ Skender Rusi

Throughout his life, the illustrious lyric poet Skënder Rusi poured the vibrant colors of passion and the deep hues of love into his poetry, celebrating his beloved city, Korça. Esteemed for his imaginative style, Rusi is hailed as one of the most distinguished contemporary lyricists, capturing the very essence of his themes with masterful and unparalleled artistry.

Born in 1952 in the heart of Korça, Rusi’s early life was steeped in the cultural richness of his surroundings. He pursued higher studies in language and literature, laying the foundation for his prolific career. In 1984, he graduated in dramaturgy, and in 1998, he further honed his skills as a library director in Cairo. His journey led him to be appointed director of the “Thimi Mitko” library in Korça in 1992, a testament to his dedication to the literary arts.

Rusi’s literary contributions include eight books of poetry, each brimming with evocative imagery and profound emotion. Two of his dramas were brought to life on stage by the “A. Z. Çajupi” theater troupe, showcasing his versatility and talent. His works transcended borders, finding a place in anthologies across Europe, including Germany, Switzerland, Macedonia, Kosovo, and Greece, among others.

As the president of the “Bota e Re” Writers’ Club in Korça, Rusi fostered a vibrant literary community. For several years, he orchestrated and led Korça’s most prominent cultural event, “Korça Nights of Poetry,” which drew poets from Kosovo, Greece, Macedonia, Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Italy, and beyond. This event became a beacon of cultural exchange and artistic expression.

Rusi’s legacy is one of profound impact and enduring influence. He passed away at the age of 72, yet his poetic voice continues to resonate, ensuring his immortality through his work. His verses, rich with beauty and emotion, remain a testament to his love for Korça and his unwavering dedication to the craft of poetry.

Beloved Hand

It’s been nearly 100 years since you started trembling,
Like a weather vane showing the direction of the wind.
I’ve come to believe by now
That you are not just part of my arm, but part of my heart.

For only within the heart do the winds always blow,
And winters come that refuse to leave.
But you, my little one, don’t hide in pockets,
Nor be ashamed of eyes that bother you.

For you are the hand of a poet, and that is no small thing,
You have always given warmth to people.
You have always hated false love,
And false handshakes with others.

Beloved hand, I know I’ve tired you out,
In 100 years I’ve committed 1,000 follies,
But never have I felt a winter
As cold as when you tremble.

The Wives of Poets

Always wounded,
These wives of poets!
(In their books, you find so many “lovers!”) Tortured by the thought,
That such absurd masquerade balls
Continue to exist!
Always Archimedes,
These wives of poets!
They seek enigmas
In Etruscan letters!
Frightened by the abyss
Of some past love!
Terrified by the ruins
Of some possible betrayal!
Always impeccable,
These wives of poets!
(Yet, they cannot deliver
any kind of punishment!)
Their “Eurekas”
They share with no one else,
enduring the consequences
Of every winter alone!
Always in love,
These wives of poets!
Even if you see them so rarely
In the initials! Oh… but they are
The beginning of every poem,
And the end of every great folly!

The Night Isn’t Always Black

The night isn’t always black,
Look up to the sky,
Some extinguished fires reignite,
And birds fly as they did before.

We are still in the house of winter,
Everything lies dead under the snow,
We both want and don’t want it to leave,
Let anyone who wishes come.

I tell you today, come with me,
I’ll carry you on my back if needed,
We’ll depart at night and arrive before dawn,
Only to set off again on our journey.

I have become one with the night,
Wearing a piece of it on my head,
And the birds have turned blue again,
And the black night is beautiful once more.

There are days when I
Don’t know what to do with myself,
I step out of the house,
Loneliness holding my hand.

I seek a river where I
Can rest,
To sleep on its waters,
Just a little, just a bit!

There are days I await
your returning footsteps,
They are on their way,
I recognize this sound,
Farewell to my days of peace,

And to all of you others
That I command!
There are days when I am empty,
completely empty,
I am this forest where you’d like to die,
If one day you seek me in this forest,
You will find me there, in the form of dew!

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