[she dashed into the room], Dmitry Blizniuk

Tipping Early, Dave Mehler


***ворвалась в комнатусквозь бетонный блокна черных парусах опаленных гардин .состарила обои, расплавила пластик.швырнула мне в лицо  жменю колючих z.оставила угощение на письменном столе,присыпан кусками штукатурки –связкуноворожденных крысятразвернулась  и ушласквозь новоявленную дверь в потолке.напоследок  бросила:ты больше никогда ничегоне напишешь.***остатки кораблекрушения людей.он список своих дел прочел до середины.он не сходил с сыном в дельфинарий.не вывел кошке клещей.не доделал ремонт на кухне.не дописал книгу стихов.не пришел на встречу одноклассников.его быстро настигает ползучее  НИКОООГДА  –коричнево-красный питон заглатывает живьемвсе что ему дорого.о Боже,ему оказывается дорого все.он годами лепил из кусочковсмешную вздорную статуюсмысл жизни –шагающий термитник с флейтой.но пришел муравьед войны,длинным когтем выбил окна и двери,всех съелсладких и кислых людей.


(translated by Valentin Yemelin )

she dashed into the room
through the concrete block
under the black sails of scorched curtains.
aged the wallpaper, melted down the plastic.
threw in my face
a fistful of barbed Z-s.
left a plaster powdered dessert
on the writing table,
a bundle of newborn rats,
then pivoted and left
through a newly added door in the ceiling,
spitted out on her way:
you will never write
anything again.

the remnants of human shipwrecks.
midway through his catalogue of deeds.
he did not take his son to the dolphinarium.
did not treat the cat for ticks.
did not finish repairs in the kitchen.
did not complete the book of poems.
did not come to the class reunion.
a sweeping NEEEVER reaches him quickly –
a brick-red python swallows alive
all what’s dear to him. oh, God,
it turns out that everything is dear to him.
for years he sculptured a funny absurd statue
from tiny fragments
of the meaning of life –
a walking termitarium with a flute.
but an anteater of war came,
smashed doors and windows with his crooked claw,
ate all
sweet and sour people.

Dmitry Blizniuk


Editor’s note: For the record, Dmitry informed us these two ‘sections’ were actually submitted to us as two poems–not one. Massimo and I assumed this poem could be one or might be two. Dmitry confirmed they were two but admitted the connection between them and didn’t mind us linking them as one so we stuck with our original presentation of them in publication.


Review by Mykyta Ryzhykh

The first verse is obvious, and the second, by mood and metaphors, introduces us into a state of trance and the unreality of what is happening – the war in the center of Europe and in my homeland. In turn, the phrase “anteater of war” resembles “Antenor” from Dante’s “Divine Comedy” – and it becomes scary from understanding what is happening.


Review by Massimo Fantuzzi

Troubles in Paradise. A muse and her protégé: a fall from her grace, a well-deserved telling-off. Our muse is angry and, typically, we are left quite puzzled. Two stanzas or two parts in one poem separated by asterisks equal two takes from the same script.

When it comes to muses and invocation to them, my favourite exchange is not from Dante or Virgil, but from a rather strange movie:



The scene is disintegrating. Clementine’s speech is delivered without passion.


Joel, I’m not a concept. I want you to just keep that in your head. Too many guys think I’m a concept or I complete them or I’m going to make them alive, but I’m just a fucked-up girl who is looking for my own peace of mind. Don’t assign me yours.


I remember that speech really well.



I had you pegged, didn’t I?


You had the whole human race pegged.




I still thought you were going to save me. Even after that.


I know.


It would be different, if we could just give it another go around.


Remember me. Try your best. Maybe we can.

The scene is gone.

(Charlie Kaufman, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind: The Shooting Script)

Men: the precise and suggestive brushstrokes in these poems tell us of our incompleteness, fallacy, clumsiness, and childlike dependency. Misdeeds, cockups, fiascos: so many disasters! Without the favors of our muse, we are left helpless and cannot but regret our shortfalls in an unreal room with a newly added door in the ceiling. The search for forgiveness, the hope for sense and salvation comes in the shape of a funny absurd statue – a totemic artefact meticulously put together with lint and scraps that we pray will make sense of all this struggle, infuse us with power and speak to us in a melody of flute.

From these honest pages of humanism, we emerge immature and irresponsible, scolded; we emerge truly castrated, our sweet and sour people – gametes – eaten alive. However, despite her wrath, we sketch something on the page, but our writing has no beginning – our sentences don’t deserve to start with a capital letter.


Review by Jared Pearce

The wonderful surprises in the imagery (the fistful of Zs, the rat bundle) show the writer’s ultimate revenge: no loss, no loneliness, no bitterness is so awful that it can’t become good writing.

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