She’s been a friend of many years,
loyal and steadfast almost to a fault,
but when the subject turns to Macedonia
and the faltering attempt to resolve
a lingering dispute about a country’s name
all measure disappears.

The Macedonians given half an inch
would soon claim the whole of northern Greece,
the Bulgarians would join in
gobbling up both bits
and only the greatest vigilance by patriotic Greeks
can forestall a catastrophe foretold.

Naively you had thought the Balkan Wars
had ended a century ago.

— Philip Resnick