FEBRUARY 22 — MARCH 9, 2022

Transitions №7

Author: Ivan Platonov

Translated by Dmitry Manin



Double bind (Double blind)

double bind double blind
The way a mother treats her child to instill schizophrenia in him
The poles of consciousness gather icebergs
The ice race
Resists metrically with an edge
: from a cut
blood is curdling
Preservation of a released shape
Licks the wound as if

<The impossibility to completely give oneself to another
is expressed is equalized
by a dual vacillating ethics>

The spurious background dialogue
looms above like a void
A statement provokes a reciprocal strike
Makeup is smearing
We lie on ice melting
A form enters a form
Your cold and warm gates
In my eye a fountain pen twirls every which way
I’m writing naked white statics


And now imagine that the context is crossed out

Think through the second animal
To break vision: to break auto-speech
; attention-speech
across the knee


Verification time

War runs ahead of revolution
The war runs ahead of the revolution inside
And only then… When the government fucks them both
We want (the defeat of) both
like bread
(and circuses)


Verification speech;

verification words: we are always inside the government
: the sign field lets us in
is addressed by
the buzz of cicadas
Under the buzz of cicadas
Over the buzz of cicadas
Go to sleep


Verification nothing

(worn thin)
(worn thin to the sky)
Is flying inside us
Like the pause of a double wind
That died down but remained on the skin
in the lungs
in the mouth
Like dry ice;
the front
(Rotfront) of a startled winter
I lie inside the snow and think
The narrative presses into me
And the mechanism of summer
(the future summer) pregnant with me
gives me my mother back precarious and unhurried
Like a wounded house


February 22, 2022




Trembling leaves in the points of confluence
congealing of wind
There are pieces of evidence impossible to examine
To collect
As love as rage
freedom equipoise
brotherhood of peoples
It pains me greatly
(I enjoy it greatly)
to resist you
A certain form formula has spread about
And pushed the light swaying in the shade

The list of new emoji
Icy rage: a red icicle
Polyamory: an upside-down heart
A slap in the face of public taste: la gioconda verboten
Caution censorship: broken pencil
Censorship: green yellow and red eraser
Caution politics: hammer and sickle
I don’t know how to say forgive me: a red square
I want you to shut up: cracked clock face
To be honest I’ve had enough of you: empty hourglass
To be honest I’ve had enough of myself: broken police baton
(there are also more complicated hieroglyphics)
A red icicle in la gioconda’s eye: enough of poetry

And when they all started drawing poetry
Drawing books of poetry
On paper, on houses, in personal correspondence
Words migrated back into objects
Into nature into things into war into rage into freedom
The body was displaced
Silence ensued
The speed of silence
created a new unified graphical nonlanguage
Thought and consciousness
plunged into the emptiness of the sign
To keep drawing in one’s own company

I draw my index finger along your breast
You bite my finger
Forbidden symbols
That which has no direct meaning
(a phalanx knocked out)
Alexanderplatz Displacement Sensetaxi
Signrhyming merges place and vision Foul
The precision of one’s disappearance in the other
still self-appearing metaphysical authority
of the purple over the baby blue:
of the background external hatred over the dual vacillating ethics
And inside this blockade
there’s no ford no language nor dthth
There’s a native local map of pain
Improper fractions, classical music, barefaced ressentiment


February 23, 2022




Passing off errors as lessons
Mama spoke of History
I didn’t feel myself human
Ghosts were hematopoietic to ghosts
birds seconded them
And asked me for alms
As if I was wearing the empress’ shoes
But in this dream I’m a little fox
keeping to the shadows on Tverskaya St
An animal wants to resist
An animal wants to protest
My head is full of gloss all day long
My head is full of: I want to sleep
I want to sleep I want to sleep
And this animal gets into bed with you



It’s the time bursting into clover
cells and reverse gear
Pain begins off-target
May I stay for a while in the cold apartment
Narrated peacefully
breaks distance
Mnemonic marble
melted down within me
A lot of simple characters
remained behind the door
Gratitude should be a platitude
Beats himself on the head muttering
I want to sleep
I want to sleep
I want to sleep
Because there is no humanity
What there is
Is a patriotic substance
That manifests itself in me every morning
There’s a tiny bit of it inside and a lot outside
Place spits out weapons; never speaks but
Becomes absorbed in itself; the ultimate milk spills into Ukraine


February 25, 2022




And just like that, we’re back in Soviet-era kitchens:
let’s begin. Given. Firstly.
Fact. We feel the body as shame and guilt.
I won’t argue. We’ve come crashing down.
Secondly. Fact. The state has always <censored> us.
We always though it quite legit to <censored>
in response. In the Fifth article of the Constitution
it should be written Answer: Shall the citizen
be responsible for the external body, if? Reference to Germany 90
years later. The Berlin wall is smoldering.
And there are no physical words. What there is
is: we inside weapons. We: the bloodiest. The East
of complicated (e)motions. And you’re employed by a
state agency… Son in the army…
We all changed yesterday.
All attempts to cut evil off of us: pariahs.
Russian passports detach from the time
of the February of language. It’s unlikely
that a jumble of keys will pull off
an abdication. <Speech breakers> try
to take the gun body in their hands in their mouth but it
passes through. We don’t exist. The skin
 keeps the trace of a tight decision to be
a void or to be cut in half by the horizon
to constitutionally see behind it silica-sling-silica.
(The exploded grief lingers).
The sky with all its cuts fastened.


February 28, 2022





A classmate of mine living in NYC now says
Your shame is your own fault
Without protesting without resisting city streets speech

Another classmate living in Germany says
Fear let’s be honest fear
(they saw what happened to those who
kept popping up for eight years straight)
(they see Ukraine: how far can they go inside the body)
of physical violence
of job loss
(of course we understand that N won’t be released before…)

Another friend living in Denmark says
But the main thing it’s ineffective
Just to check a box to ostensibly relieve consciousness
What’s effective is to arm but that means calling for violence
(I’m against violence any violence)
To say so means to appeal to the commoners
to overcome themselves
(repeating: I’m against violence any violence)
To say so means
to create a Russian Heavenly Hundred

Brother Ukrainians we are following you
That’s how we can reunite
I’m very scared but I
call the fire to myself and all those close to me
I begin the terrible prayer of a civil war
It is anti-humane

May the enemy be crushed may he crumble
May the enemy be crushed may he crumble
May the enemy be crushed may he crumble
Sometimes I can be very sincere


March 2, 2022




We have no right to words anymore
She learns to speak out of what:
we have no right to words anymore
Layers Chasms Layers Falsetto
The zone of an impetuous revolution
Every day to think in the language that has become a metaphor of lie
… this plane was supposed to land but it didn’t …

Now he is a nuclear punk
An opening bloom of an underdog
A metaphysical being rushing into what:
into things that became a new destiny
Disappearance Crossing-Out
Because behind this field there is another field of signification
Breaking fire Tactical hunger
Splinters sieve splinters of an instant pulling the breast in
spreading out to form a long sh(dr)ift of each other
She: just a good person Just
Emotional quote marks
War is substituted for the meaning of existence
Another must ripen
Like vision that blooms open instead of a weak center
in place of a clock face
When something reaches an absolute Platonic form

As if we are sitting at the table and singing in a counterlanguage
That we don’t understand; they point fingers at us and no one
is going to turn us over to it to teach to instruct
Manipulation attempt storm to become a thing a function a tautology:
to define oneself at least in relation to the parts of post-truth
the transmutation of narrative (animal) fear into metaphysical fear 
(distributed over the entire surface of muteness)
And back
By erasing presents a distanced body-after-logos
(as) The impounded right to pain to poetry to expression
hangs —

the time before the incest corridor: simple;
its childish minimalist is precise free open;
and the time after: empty; to subject oneself to stuttering
exists in two places simultaneously:

where reason grasps the dthth of language state systems tautologies
as a body part remembered only just severed guilty
(oh yes, consciousness can ache like vision hands)
when the viewfinder holds you as two short circuits:
time emerging from space: photo:
a boy inside a boy
inside fire inside communism but
space emerging from time:
a girl above a photo
tears off tears open burns the image: offtopic:
to die in vain:
snake-like unraveling crumbling sinking of the front into
the tide; into the sand of the wave.
Turning of the keys: I beg you — live without words
without a narrative
without stitching
(they are oblique)


After the return of the meanings of Auschwitz,
9/11, Beslan, Ukraine apparently et cetera
Adorno’s question has faded.

The possibility of post-poetry is assembled from
the smartphone the dinner plate the table I eat at —
a rectangle a complex circle and a rectangle —
torn off their objects
they seem a par(edge)ise
that lets the form in naked broken.
Bottom line.
Everything works out well: I tell my daughter and son.
Now we know what’s good and what’s evil.
Who is who. And who are: we.
Interesting. Have we learned the symptoms so that
this never repeats?
No words no country no throat no vocal chords…
The ability to eat at least with our hands
gold the algorithm of the golden
(dis)section of the red
into equal parts
with a donor sword
(like blood but without a body)
of silence all the way through.
A one-word being: withoutabody:
such a tinsel-debris-dots. Ellipses…


March 5, 2022




Space needs to be led (like a boy) out of time
To wake up and lie in the dark with nothing to do or think
Spontaneous generation
Self-generation of mind flight and the screwdriver point
The nonexistent response of a swallow
War: time unwound
And this reading causes disgust
Space closes up on people
When the word parallelogram is cut off from the mirror
from reduplication
from ice lumps

Whether time needs to be led (like a girl) out of space:
the meaning
the sign
sliding smoldering
(daddy I have to slide down this hill)
(don’t you: understand?)
(daddy, I have to walk on the edge stones)
When she grows into a civil servant
she doesn’t wait for me tick-tock tick-tock the game stops short of
canceling the father antigone domain music
the machine of love-inundated memory
cuts off arthur rimbaud’s

Those who fled the country
settle down cuddle down inside weapons
When they are fucking touching each other
All’s different All’s different
The unbearable acquires the unbreakable
An acute desire to burn down the temple
a hand held out
a new family
a house
Acquires completeness
By terrorizing
The desolate critical ounce
To violate
Of the bronze horseman


March 7, 2022




… as light is laid down through shadow
… and any feeling moves from
a window without a view
to a view without a window

Breaking away from the regicides

<Why don’t we commit a crime on our way
home from subway?>
Dispersed scars
Deeply disguised desire


A metronome that fell silent
To give a voice
To give a meaning
That is to reconnect time

Silence sickened in a storm

The eternal fire never goes out but wears off wears thin
Looking for new forms of precision
Greenwich is HIV-positive epicurean conceived
Fed to the water

Doubled. Even tripled.

A manager a delivery man and a clerk
talk without touching each other
Oh we are so small so small
Oh I’m so small so small

Sweet-and-sour neck

He kisses her : she is sharp
With the cutting edge of a lone protester
The compass reflects the demolition zone
As tragicomic

Ruined words Ruined meanings

A grain sieve
Sprouts through a void
Sounding beyond
The trajectory

Substance decomposes in the mouth

a thing by touch
is feeling the sound storm
A body crack


subjects life to the utopia of equality in love
On top of the humiliatingly sentimental
The resistance of the white displacement
of time

Mom says: do I agree that the world decided

Russians must die either
of hunger or of bullets at protests
I don’t know anymore But it’s great we don’t have to
choose honor violence

I’m marching inside the fractured legitimacy

To speak in pathos
Of the boys facing each other
(parthenogenesis accelerates afghanistan chechnya yugoslavia)
When <chairs, tables and tablecloth rain down from the sky>

Speaking simultaneously: you don’t exist


March 9, 2022




I’m totally on Ukraine’s side, but I have dreams about:
Zelensky killing a Russian soldier with a shot in the back of his neck.
Putin killing a Ukrainian soldier with a shot in the back of his neck.
Biden killing a Russian soldier with a shot in the back of his neck.
Merkel killing a Ukrainian soldier with a shot in the back of his neck.
Macron killing a Ukrainian soldier with a shot in the back of his neck.

To see them killing with your own eyes

I’m trying to understand: we have died and become water.
This is a poem
a frozen titmouse falling in flight.
The body lies to the East, to the West, to a hair’s breadth.
Through the gunshot we can see America inside Kafka.
The marginalized typhoidal
wants to overcome
the caisson man.

Here a thought transition
should conjoin two spaces in the shape of a draft.

Imagine: to live with a feeling
no with the knowledge
that there’s someone wanting to kill you.
There may be more than one of them in the course of your life.
It’s not as if you deserved it:
you are simply

Poetry lies in your pocket and you can’t pull it out like a knife.
You pull out a freakish Gastarbeiter.

Ceremonial gliding,
pupil contraction
as if you emerged into daylight:
as if you were inside hunger
carved out of the besieged snow;
not a soul in the streets.
A desire to cry out: Yeow Yeow Yeow: like a seagull.

Silence squeezed by the wind.
Alexander Blok
strolling by my side.
A strained vein on his neck.
The regime and the snow stoker
slumped down.

Fuckingawesome restored pathos
is exhausted but
concerns the natural person.
To cancel a person.
I think I am
a porous atom-filtered sponge
out of myself

incomplete syphilitic
a fresco with bits fallen out but
still standing;
a translucent half an hour
a fragment of time
a cube
disjoint cracked on the inside
a burst oversaturated apple an introvert who
to stop rome

a catastrophic man
enters the room
having decided nothing for himself
His silken movements
tear apart the iron circle

Barefooted naked
he wanders around the apartment
where it is snowing
Pushkin’s blizzard intermittently
reanimates the word <suddenly>

It tastes
salty like the note sol
That spreads out musically between the ribs
The cold dashes about underfoot
In Europe it’s midnight attack midnight
They’re waiting for the repertory Hamlet

A man’s nondecision
drops face down on the table
And says:

I want one thing only
: a little personal cold war
to lay it face down on the table
And pat it on the back
pat on the back

With brisk and sweeping strokes
Every time
it starts talking about guilt
alma mater
and the dead
Guildenstern and Rosencrantz


March 15, 2022




Dthth is always something one-sided, easy
As I lie on this table
I want to see the god of war
I feel the burden pressing down on me
I feel the void beneath wooden floorboards
Tumbleweed curls up into its own wound

How many
of us have seen its trace
while the guilt
pierced the storm
and exchanged
intrusion for erasure
inside the crying

A bee
weaving color
An arm
an armature of the world
Multidimensionality of dance:
multidimensionality of the wind’s center:
multidimensionality of incomprehension
: are you evil too?
(am I really evil?)

Entropy mania
Could it be that this dude
and this woman
and this girl across the isle
support the triumph
(porridge. pushes out pushes out the rottweiler)

— perhaps you don’t think even about what you’ve done?
— dunno: perhaps I do.

— you don’t know, huh? as Fyodor Mikhailych said:
<why aren’t you laughing: or are you laughing again?>
straight from the shoulder less straight from the shoulder: and more
than seven billion bodies
I have
between May and June
time that systemically mechanically

A thought
that binds
space and substance
of unwinding emptiness
Fallen from the wall:
came running out of childhood

The dead nation enters and exits the subway
(sometimes I can’t exit for several
hours: stuttering into myself)
The dead nation goes to work
Ahnenerbe Ahnenerbe
An autoword that takes me out of a blood clot
I imagine ruins outside
after artillery shelling
I walk inside them

I don’t know what I feel

In the resulting sharpness
(my father says:
in such moments literature helps:
I opened Dragomoshchenko and Palmer:
shifting time
makes me even smaller
marks up the sand
shifts its roots
 with a stale-bread lunge in your eyes)
inflamed white
punctured slashed vision
can’t close the eyelid
cut itself off

because when
[oh when]
it all comes to an end
those-who-never-slept —
open to well-balanced unutterable blind spots —
will recall that: they couldn’t explain the snow of sleeplessness

Having bought meat

Poetry at the time of war
: incorrect speech
is subject to the ultimate narrative
Intentionally ultimately
distancing from each other
we are moving counterclockwise in
our lonely apartments
and making love in
<spaces that ceased to belong to language>
Don’t be mad, please, but
it is only possible to speak about war from a distance
Surrounded by the simplicity of hatred
The tone has to murder you like a mutilated body of a child with no
pride no way to survive
choosing between a brutal dishonor and
hardly anything else but schindler-listing

Previously history was a background
And now we are firmly stuck inside
We: the glass of history
Where time is palpable like the shape of wind
Absent like a system on top of mimesis

Keep going knowing that all words are trash: glide


March 17, 2022




When morning comes
: daybreak
We’ll fish out
we’ll break all the shadows

When evening comes
We won’t be able to tell
our shadows from the campfire
soap from speech
from bargaining
from a strike
of militant freedom of
In this holy rapture
victory day
never seemed to us
a portent
a self-infection
a self-generation
a catchy mirror
Thus the field grows low
(chaliapin’s voice blends with
the flight from the victor to
the defeated)
… not quite emptiness but
an articulated return
A trace of the underground on the pinkie
The strength to be reflected
sewn on to something
an in__here__nt part

To answer the left one
To answer for the right one
Not to get yourself into Solovki

By the fourth week she got tired of feeling guilty of shame
being ashamed of theodicy
ceased to be
Trying to guess which of the passersby: on the contrary
Among her children she became an equal
<passing from recognition to estrangement and back>
<Untidy recollections
inherit circuitously>

"Daniil Ivanovich, I was waiting for you.
I’m talking to you as if you were alive".
You are alive for me
Blood dresses us abstractly
A jester is being brotherly
Leathery bits and pennies fall off
I’m a kid in a toy store
I want to drop on the floor not to cry but to whisper:
I want my favorite doll system back
It’s sweet it’s steady like the parachute of nausea
Hail to you communism my communism
a telescope gobbled a telescope
A mechanism inspects a mechanism inside
God’s blind God’s blind God’s blind
But in a different way
There’s no distance here
There’s white circular time
caught up with the context
A fragment
Where the victory marshal crosses the Rubicon
And déjà vu:
the first consul self-becomes an emperor
The French revolution can barely contain itself
A thermite tautological wall
increasingly resembles scales
(the scales of a theremin)
aiming the altitude at the temple of your head

We have no right but death is continuous
Touching the desk drawer for which we’ll be writing now
The smallest siege our hunger is feeding on

And this doesn’t scare
but talks to me
through my own self
A compass from a drafting set
outlines a circle
releasing the tension from the center
of speech
then returns back in the lodgement
I’m sitting with no arms no body
having aimlessly discarded speed and face


March 19, 2022






And now without beating about the bush

OK, sister, you are right:
utin is a murderer, Ukraine: awesome.
Should we flee and leave behind our parents
who’re in their nineties
Flee for freedom of speech
with six kids between the two of us
To a country where we’ll never find a job
Yes, the same way as Ukrainians who are
being killed
houses burned
Motherland taken away
Who engage in a Great Patriotic War
(btw god forbid the son gets drafted)
Or should we go to the protests
get a police baton up the anus
lose the job and starve to death

See a russkie: kill a russkie
Your dostoyevsky may
s@ck my d@ck
As for your POWs we’ll shoot them all
And in the other ear an incessant hum
of the Völkischer Beobachter

I’m gathering hatred on both sides
I want to resist but…

And then to land in a labor camp for three years
parents and kids left on their own
(Which amounts to the same thing as fleeing)
Sure sure it’s smaller than the pain
of the innocent Ukrainians
And I’m far from condemning
on the contrary
I support those who were able and strong enough
to step into the unknown
But I can’t listen anymore
to those outside
Let them speak
who are inside

Separated perhaps forever

But you are probably right
Turn off our internet
Erase our language
Our cities and culture

I don’t understand:
where does it come from
this hatred inside me
in the morning I’ll be ashamed of this feeling but

The hardest thing now
is to get up in the morning
dress up
eat drink
go to work
forget the fact that we are dead already but
to love you ever more
knowing we have no time left
that would love and want us
and we have no space in which
this love is justified


March 20, 2022




Mom, my freshmen classmates are all against war
We are writing texts almost all of us
As the heirs of
Mandelstam Iskrenko Dragomoshchenko

The first one says: we have never even voted

The second one says: what do we do with the husband and the toddler?

The forth one says: all private firms went bankrupt
It’s impossible to work for this government
But ethics and morals kick your teeth out when you choose to live

The fifth one says: they want to force the feeling on me
Shame guilt humiliation and responsibility
I do feel feel feel them
But I can’t live with this constant contempt

The sixth one says: was reading Dostoyevsky today
The Idiot
Where Nastasya Filippovna says to Rogozhin
who’s spent the night on his knees before her
There was a king who stood on his knees LIKE THAT before a Pope
How many times in the course of the night do you think
he swore revenge?

The seventh one said:
The world drew the curtain
We are left in the loneliness of premonition

The eighth one said:
Judging by what we are seeing
we’ll be saved by the Russian Heavenly Hundred thousand

The ninth one says:
it’s clear now that there won’t be any mass protests

The tenth one says:
The entire nation as an enemy
To put Rogozhin on his knees in front of the whole world
It’s… it’s… it’s…
I won’t say it’s unfair I’ll say it’s
quite fair and

The eleventh one says:
The correct interpretation of Adorno means that
We should be ready
to die to be dying every day
One extraordinary translator
edits a well-known quote:
<This is what’s most important:
"to break free from blindness motivated by self-preservation".
And reject the "existential position".
The artist is distinct from the person.
Because identity is death,
a justification of death…
You must also reject yourself,
the "existential position",
in Adorno’s formulation.
Reject self-pity.
Exclude self-preservation motive.
To be unafraid of participating in existence
(with poems),
in other words:
to be unafraid of death>.

The twelfth one inside the sixth one makes note:
not to vote
to work within contempt
not to choose life
not to feel
unclear: whether to stand on the knees
practice corrective reading

Mom, what does it mean to betray the Motherland?
Mom, I became yourself
What does it mean to live in the USSR?
We are glued together and dated

I only remember that
<to make the language simpler
even simpler
to stand stunned>
As if the heart lacks vision
Oh yes, get used to pathos
of senselessness
of impotence
of deathlessness
: glide-glide-glide

in the country which has metaphysically defeated narrative
irony is like religion:
the last string for you to play on
like Paganini

I’m re-reading the text and feeling within me a restoration
of a fascist state
We don’t entirely believe the perimeter of these words
even when they occur right now
: a section within me
it works it shows such a poem
that would collect the invasion back


March 21, 2022



14. Attachment #1

A heavy meaning:
Keeping three point magnitudes simultaneously contained
Moscow zero; Kyiv zero; Berlin zero
A technical defeat of vision
Collecting the geometrical resultant
Somewhere in the sky beyond the borders
transposition juxtaposition of the centrifugal —

Actually, it’s a very strange feeling
To understand that Russian poetry has ended
Or at least temporarily halted
Thematically we’ve run into death
rejection contempt for language
Including the world over
(choosing a book for the day in the morning
: thumb-laugh-thumb-laugh-shelf)

Ar ti cu la ta bi li ty: in ar ti cu la ta ble
Like an insect captive passive in hoarfrost
kinetically taken out of poikilothermia
We had no time to flip the switch on cold
Articulatable: lies on firm water
The stream flows below her
Without touching her weightlessness
Articulatable: the pre-war lasts beyond
poetry metaphors memories about
water as water fire as fire place simply as place: a word
By all means or by all men
can’t see from here

Ever less
Ever lower
The authority of anarchy
We need the new world which
presents itself begins with a question
<What is your death if it had been mine?>
A white warm-blooded pendulum
The larch phase
We: Natasha and Kupriyanov who don’t dissolve in classical eros
but openly masturbating each other

What kind or art is necessary during war?
Whatever we may say: there’s no poetry anymore
A man in a test tube
unbidden abandoned abstracted
brings the bookcase down —

We’ll live long lives
Like the wandering Jew
Aesthetics is but applied physiology


March 22, 2022



15. Attachment #2

After all why is everybody so excited¿
The phallocentric language is falling apart: hallelujah
This is not a first: history has seen narcissistic
maniacal personalities with delusions of grandeur
Nero, Kaligula, Roman pontiffs…
It’s too tiresome to enumerate them
The only difference is that we’re inside
Those were far away like in the movies and this one is too close
Only this time it’s us who’ll die not someone else
not some outside characters in pictures
This should be stated calmly
Or, we can copy our parents
: live with lies in a stolen country

It is provably established:
we were wrong in everything
Standing sitting lying : comprehending
For others it’s still in the future —

It’s this language rhythm sentimentality
that have brought us here. The profane
defeated the sacred. A-gain.
Is it a gain? Swell.

A joy of recognition
What does it do?
It does something.
Yes, they’ll probably
Tear us apart with their teeth.

That’s civil war for you
Quite civil
If you keep accelerating escalating irony
It is converted into grotesque farce tragifarce tragedy
Troy and Denmark get metaphorized: and so on
A naked body uncovers a systemic bug
Let’s hug as if

by untying our language we create we comprehend no new one
alas the world turns away from Wagner
without stopping we are stopping what
which makes breaks us how

what: to suddenly find ourselves inside mandelstam is terrifying
how: to touch a wall with a graffiti saying putin *****@… awaiting


March 23, 2022



16. Attachment #3

Would be great if the lights were just turned off: turned on:
Click-clack. And everything’s back to normal.
The complicated staring closely into your eyes.
Minus 4D myopia is rubbing the nose.
A Russian Lit and Lang teacher from Penza says:

stop bulshitting: it’s all simple and primitive:
there’s no moral choice and there never was.
The world doesn’t give a damn about my shame guilt kids and family.
I won’t go to the war but working for the government
is lying and evading: for Chrissake, it’s USSR for you.
Seen that. Nothing new. I’ll explain to my students off the record
my parents’ and my decision. I’ll accept accusations only
from someone who went to the protests and got jailed.
Fines emigration and a middle finger in your pocket don’t count.
Make all your arguments heard bravely in person
in the Red Square. If they try to draft me: I’ll flee.
Better to flee than to be in jail or dead.

The history teacher agrees with me.
I’m 24, she’s 22. Our son is two, daughter two months old.
We are anarcho-liberals.
That’s the entire program of our party.
If not the mention of USSR, after reading this
you might think that
it’s 1922 outside.
Blok died less than a month ago.
Mandelstam, Kharms and Vvedensky still alive.
Fascism hasn’t been invented yet.

The civil war.
Poems are written concurrently with the emigrant trains.
Systemic disjoint chaos.
Fog. Downpour. Fog
is programming water
to stay contained between flexible walls.


March 24, 2022



March 25 —29, 2022



The inexplicable garden
I saw their eyes in which
the immobilized snow
What about this onslaught?
With its sweeping run
and the man-land
long before Troy
crying against the wind:
your frescos have fallen out of themselves, Landsknecht
(the land’s servant)
Freeze : don’t thaw away: trust and beast:
that way it’s easier to eat and go to work
Watching the fish below the ice
who think it’s you who is
on the other side of the coin.

Guess it’s mighty strange
to breathe emptiness rather than water
To walk upright
rather than swim along the body axis
An easy space:
shutoff soul
The groundhog day is fidgety but
its depth politically
rests on the bottom
The body turned water
holds ice in its mouth
The body turned cold burns
The tongue turned gold gains heft

The benchmark pre-war
cracks weakens deceives
The crack speaks-hardens-melts
Turn the water over: step on it: resulting in tension a gesture of
casting away simple very simple things
beauty death love
a slightly tipsy space
Got nicely high: sit down, read, branch out

If you want to eat: eat
If you want to sing: don’t sing
After that you’ll want more
Returning life newly misunderstood
A step sees from the outside
like a fallen leaf sees the tree captured
(sealed off)
Both top and bottom are burning across
And behind your back: forest flying
enormous venous thick level equal barefooted overstrained
(having lost home-speech-eyes
the desire to speak to flow incessantly)
There used to be an inexplicable garden once


March 25, 2022




— I love you but I’ll kill you
— it’s your right
Arguing about Ukraine an old couple on the bench by the house

A month beside the war plunges into life
You start making tabooed incursions into various areas
of the f@ckup fed up with people

Skepticism is not just god’s-dead-missed
And God talking to you as if real
How can I shield myself?

The permanent (lat. permanens, from per and manere — to remain:
uninterrupted, continuous, in the same state)
a stone instant
Smoothing out whisper-whistle-whisper
The distance to SMERSH squeezed between teeth

It persists as if standing persists
Grass herbage steppe
The hum of restyling

It’ll have rotted settled down weighed
You and I are lying-flying-poking-out inside a gradual
Sprouting ingrowing uprising of words in a circle

Separating of words from time
The speed of a sandy wind
A fine-grained piercing dust

looks like out of it I’m building a fragment
Of a second human daughter-door
Shrapnel that leads nowhere but

stitching up the mouth-speech-cry
an open choking winter
a discarded culture that consoles the mosaic minority

Tuesday wanders alone all fucked up but calm
Swearing with no expression no emphasis no books
More as a way of framing the doorway through which we can see the storm


March 27, 2022




She was always reading books of poetry backwards
Breaking the logical flow of the internal narrative
Consuming enveloping the cause with the effect
The caused was wearing off getting unlinked incriminating
The author’s time was appropriated blended with the reverse

Later. While reading the source in the proper sequence
she assembled speech-death-speech-laughter-death-speech
into an actual nation-state
Standing over the daughter’s body
every one-sixth
grew in like water
becoming a river in the widow’s throat

War-neck-war compressed the available vocabulary:
you can’t feel and speak:
those verbs are not yours anymore: i.e. don’t contain you
The pretty darling language’s lips are torn
mass-produced pornographic blindly-by-touch
feels the remaining body all over

I’ve read
but never liked Solzhenitsyn’s prose
And now I feel that
I’m working in a sharashka for food
(or rather) I remember I can’t feel:
the gesture is severed from its cause

Petting the dog
Petting the dog
Petting the dog
I’m vomiting my own language-speech-beginning
Oprichnina will scr@w oprichnina
While I chew wadding
The right to nonlove


March 28, 2022