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Winter Diary

who bravely blasts their breath through the horn flares of gloomy streets,

into dripping construction trailers, dropped by the dead, the dull anxiety of homeowners,

clutching sausage and cookies under their arms.

 

phalanges rattle over a piano smashed in the Winter Palace

I am only dreaming this, only dreaming

 

hare krishnas shaved like newly-weds push through the cotton frost

 

*

an oblate antifascist in the metro crush

secretly broadcasts through his horn with blood

 

a coded sound – a French horn, in comes an orchestra of autists

in magic carriages to the cackling of iron actors and the chatter of the auction

 

a sale on scorched backwater ontology in the slime of pudenda

I am only dreaming this, only dreaming

 

*

cloudy beer without foam, where god lives in the uncanny consciousness of poets

hovering over a supper of bread alone and world news,

grunting in wonder:

 

look it’s snowing, tucking away the ashes in ovens and vases with care.

 

sitting turkish-style (or indian-style, as you lot say) online

you broadcast something from the loudspeaker of opposition,

like a lackey, with restless glances into worn lacunas,

 

*

into the cartography of the place –

right here, syria moves fast along the fingernail’s edge,

turkey’s stuffing bombardments down its throat, and in its breast france’s flywheel spins,

here a steel voice gnaws through the frame of leviathan, that drunk crocodile…

 

winter diary: I came to you to find freedom,

to take you by the hand, to take in your last warmth. you won’t say no

to one last meeting, will you?

 

*

Lenin flows by fast   in the statuary stillness of private meetings, private unions, Lenin’s speech hangs over this place like a butcher’s apron sanitized with bleach.

 

pigs squealing, cutting through Nevsky

Prospect. dull eyes,    and a knot of new year’s snakes

on a head without a face. a black Škoda and half a body fallen half way out – at the breast

on the Field of Mars   the butcher’s ballet and the icy swings

of tear-stained acid trips, covering the eternal flame.


ABOUT THE CONTRIBUTOR

was born in 1990 in the city of Omsk (Siberia, Russia) and currently lives in St. Petersburg. She has published poems in the Russian Journals The New Literary Observer, Air, Sho, and in the Translit series. Her essays on cinema, literature, and sexuality have appeared on the internet portals Séance, Colta, and Milk and Honey. She is the author of the recently published collection Moving Space of the Revolution.

Joan Brooks is a writer and translator based in Pittsburgh, PA. Their interests include autoethnography, queer-communism, and the russophone world. They have translated a broad range of contemporary russophone authors, particularly leftist and queer-feminist poets, publishing in a variety of print and online journals and on their translation blog: https://joan-brooks.com/. They are also the author of Greetings, Pushkin!: Stalinist Cultural Politics and the Russian National Bard (Pittsburgh UP, 2016) and numerous scholarly articles.

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