‘his balance / between person and / abstraction’s so stirring I want no other token for anything can happen’
Fyodor Denisovich Konstantinov
‘A piece of boxwood, gripped in a vise, / waits on the workbench for his knife.’ Poetry by Lev Ozerov, translated from the Russian by Boris Dralyuk, and introduced by Robert Chandler.
Turn the River
‘Backtrack / to the bones of the matter, which are the bones themselves.’
‘he cut out small talk / not hearing it, convincingly deaf to its nothing’
‘Why wasn’t I better made / to refute assimilation’s maze’
‘you can call my price by any name and she will come just the same’
‘Tryptamine skies and the forehand backhand falter / in earth’s revolutions’
I Wrote a Poem About a Fucking River
‘though I’ve sat where torrents recall no slush / I’m drawn by your ceramic explosions’
Reflections on shame in sacred spaces
‘At sunset the light is both nasty and nice / in my robe.’
‘One of the loveliest possibilities / is that the truth is made of glass’
Cassiopeia (three back-to-front songs)
‘Anyway, I did not die. / I lined the sky, inside-out.’ Translated from the Georgian by Jean Sprackland and Natalia Bukia-Peters.