Fall 1992 • Vol. XIV No. 4 Poetry |

Untitled

Here, everything gets eaten: drippings, marinade, even shoe polish. Here, it's our custom to be proud of the ore from the mines and the space up above, where there's room enough to fit hundreds of Frances. The sky isn't prized here for its freedom; and, as for earth, we have to allot the dead their two meters, while some of the living are given six, and some of them twelve. Here, the signature, the seal, and the spokesman are parts of a ritual for deaf and dumb minds. The roads here can rock you so well that you don't wake up until the eighth day. And time was that here, in the dark before dawn, whoever wanted to eat was set this task: to build the Kingdom of God on earth and a crystal heaven-scraping palace to boot.   Three poems translated from the Russianby Paul Graves and Carol R. Ueland

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