The Polish Lover's Grave

Community efforts to memorialize a timeless tale

SUQ AL-SHUYUKH— In a moving tribute to a story deeply ingrained in the hearts of Suq Al-Shuyukh’s residents, the family of the late poet Riyad Salem, in partnership with the Fayd Al-Masha’ir Cultural Forum, has undertaken the restoration of the grave of the “Polish lover,” a woman who died tragically in a road accident in 1982 while on her way to see her Polish partner. He was an employee of the company responsible for building the international highway over four decades ago.

Situated in the desert near Tell al-Lahm, about 10 kilometers west of Suq Al-Shuyukh, the grave has become a destination for the city’s intellectuals and poets. They come together to recite poetry and reflect on the enduring love story of the Polish woman.

Jasib Al-Hamdani, a poet associated with the Fayd Al-Masha’ir Forum, told 964media about the importance of preserving Tala’s story for future generations. He explained how Tala, deeply in love with a Polish engineer working on the international highway project near Tell al-Lahm, died in a car accident while en route to meet him. Her partner buried her in the area and visited her grave for ten years. Al-Hamdani highlighted the effort to enhance the grave’s appearance with paint and plants, hoping it will draw governmental support to this touching landmark.

Ali Salem Habib, involved in the restoration effort, emphasized the universal appeal of Tala’s story, which encapsulates profound human emotions. The campaign, inspired by Riyad Salem’s family, demonstrates their commitment to celebrating the essence of humanity, with hopes for official recognition and maintenance of the grave.

Ahmed Al-Khafaji, a media professional, remarked that Tala’s tale is a testament to true love, fidelity, and everlasting bonds. It has motivated individuals across Suq Al-Shuyukh to craft poems and stories, providing comfort to Iraqis who visit her grave to lay flowers and honor her memory, proving that love’s legacy never fades.