Featured Poem

explosions are the new normal...

explosions are the new normal, you grow used to them
stop noticing that you, with your ordinary ways, are a goner
a trigger man and a sapper wander around the park
whispering like a couple – I wish I could eavesdrop

surely, it goes this way: where there’s a shovel, there’s a tunnel
where there’s a conspiracy, there’s a catch
where there’s God, there’s a threshold
stalky Ukrainians – where granny tends to a garden patch

surely it’s about the meaning of death, sudden as a mudslide
surely it’s about the vodka: to relieve mortal anguish
once you’ve shown you have any brain, they’ll brain you hard into submission
hair impeccably parted – where you spot a geometrically neat moustache

a trigger man and a sapper wander around like a couple
as the angel of destruction observes them tenderly from the cloud
we’re captive birds dear brother that’s it that’s all
black sun of melancholy shines like a shrapnel hole

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About the author

Original poet


BORIS KHERSONSKY was born in Chernivtsi in 1950. In 1999 Khersonsky became chair of the department of clinical psychology at t...

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POLINA BARSKOVA is a Saint Petersburg-born poet, prose writer, and scholar. She has authored ten collections of poems in Russi...

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ANDREW JANCO is a digital scholarship librarian at Haverford College. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago...

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OSTAP KIN has published work in The Common, Poetry International, St. Petersburg Review, Springhouse, Trafika Europe, Ohio Edi...

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OLGA LIVSHIN is an English-language poet, essayist, and literary translator. Born in Odessa and raised in Moscow, she came to...

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