I Was Born Yesterday

Do you know British royalty
and British aristocrats can be
racist? Now you know.

Do you know there was once
a divine project called the
British Empire? Now you know.

Do you know the natives were
enslaved, brainwashed, and
put through the meat grinder?

Now you know. Start waving
your angry finger
at a device of choice.

Do you know that only they
who are ordained by God
can appear on Oprah? Now you know.

Thank you internet,
I know what to think now –
I was born yesterday.

Bogdan Tiganov


Feel-Good Poetry

There’s a trend now
for poetry that’s like
something you’d stick
on a t-shirt or toilet cubicle
next to ‘suck me.’

Feel-good, warm,

And not the good shit.

This loved up soup
brings in the groupies
on Instagram
and the ‘poets’
make a living from
smiling and spunking
in the permanent
neon sunset.

Oh, the remains
of Hollywood happy endings,
brains scrambled into sticky

Bogdan Tiganov

Short stories

What About Feathers?

There was a loud knock. It’s that kind of place. There’s always a noise, something falling to pieces, asking to be repaired.

I was working. Trying to write a novel. I’d been trying for years, decades, but now I’d finally got into the rhythm of it. I’d just passed 1000 words for the day.

I walked around and lit a cigarette. Nothing. Work from home sucks.

“Have you seen this? Come and take a look,” said my wife, Amelia.

Not now, I’m in the middle of a really juicy bit. If I leave now I’ll never be able to recapture the feeling.

“Fine, ok, fine,” I said and mooched over to the living room where she was pointing to the window.

“Do you see this?”

I couldn’t see anything, honestly.

“Can’t you see it?”

I strained my eyes, generally unable to see anything in life other than a laptop screen with a lack of words on it, to see what she was on about. It’s a…

“Pigeon. It’s the outline of a pigeon?”

“Poor thing,” she said.

“Look at the fucking thing!” For some reason I was angry. Was my window scratched? Dented. Broken?

We went to the garden. A cold winter afternoon with a sun like stage 3 cancer. God, shut up.

“The cat must’ve got it,” I said, seeing as there was no dead bird anywhere.

“What about feathers?”

“What about feathers?!” She had this stupid fucking annoying way of asking things.

I looked at the patio. Overgrown lawn. Wild bushes. No feathers.

That night, in bed, turned to the side, I kept thinking about suicide. Not mine, because as Emil Cioran expressed, it’s always too late, but the bird’s. I decided that I should write a scene with an unexpected suicide. A lady with hat and feather boa. She’s got it all, except death.

Bogdan Tiganov



Don’t you dare stare into her face
as her shadowy form marches down the street,
hair tied back, dark eyes, no smile for those lips.

Her bones stand still outside the grey office
as she inhales from her cigarette enough life
to show up.

Is that a warhead hurtling down?

She strolls to the toilets and hammers down a fifth of vodka,
her features deadpan like deflowered oysters.
Another day begins.

Bogdan Tiganov


Their dagger eternal

They’re strolling tonight
popping a virgin
they’re happily married
their children run surgeries
their children’s children PhDs
they own the brothel
the hotels and the factories
they know good business practice
they don’t fart in public
sip the finest wine
snort grade A coke
they’re jogging this morning
a smile tattooed across
scouting for the kill

Bogdan Tiganov

Short stories


I sat at my kitchen table, mine – my kitchen table. I lit a cigarette, somehow the ashtray just slid to me as it should. ‘Flannery O’Connor on steroids’ wrote John Williams about Harry Crews. That’s so lazy but I’m too lazy to explain why.

I felt home. Have you ever felt home? I mean felt home flowing through you and into everything around you like a superpower.

The kitchen table from circa 1980. The Russian fridge still going after thirty years. Everything unchanged. Untouched. This is where I watched my parents chase each other – dad on one side of the kitchen table, mum on the other. She held a chair up as if the chair would protect her. And they’d scream and curse and then calm down and kiss. I saw this madness like I saw my own spit fly off the balcony. Or baby chicks in the bathtub. My childhood was incredible because I created it that way in my mind, over and over, crafted like the handcrafted chess pieces my grandfather gave me when I was four.

Harry Crews wrote my favourite book, A Childhood, as if he sliced a bit of time out of the world and inserted it into type, complete with magic, soul and desire. I sat crying at my kitchen table because this was home and I could do exactly what I wanted to do. Then I left.

Bogdan Tiganov