Deciphered Lips

maltese poetry cover v4-page-001_front

In 2006 Adrian Grima was invited to Derry in Northern Ireland for a writer’s residency at the Verbal Arts Centre supported mainly by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. The residency led to the publication of this bilingual collection of poems with translations into English by Catherine McGrotty with the author.



  • Dublin-Derry – Dublin-Derry
  • L-Ispazji Li Battlu – The Emptied Spaces
  • In-Naħa l-Oħra – The Other Side
  • Sally Gap – Sally Gap
  • Mindy – Mindy
  • Xufftejk Spjegati – Deciphered Lips
  • Bull Park – Bull Park
  • Il-Belt Li Kellha Tkebbes mill-Ġdid in-Nhar – A City Meant to Rekindle Day
  • Kullimkien ir-Ritratti Tagħha – Her Photograph Everywhere
  • Il-Ġimgħa Tibda bil-Fdalijiet – A Week Starting With What Remains
  • Ma Jiġux Jintredgħu fuq is-Swar – They Don’t Come to Snog on the Walls
  • Erba’ Mitt Sena – Four-Hundred Years
  • Omagh – Omagh
  • Huma u Telgħin l-Ismijiet – While the Credits Roll
  • Univers Ġdid Fjamant – A Brand-new Universe

Six of the poems in the book, with readings in the original in Maltese, were set to music by Rory McCarron and are available on Soundcloud. The poems are “Ma Jiġux Jintredgħu fuq is-Swar,” “Omagh,” “Mindy,” “Xufftejk Spjegati,” “Bull Park,” and “Sally Gap,” Rory’s favourite track.

There are two versions of the music: the first is more rhythmical; the other, more recent version is more minimalist.

These are the original versions:

These are the more recent, minimalist versions

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s