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


» Comment on this translation 0 comment(s)

About the author

Original poet

BORIS KHERSONSKY

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

» Read more

Translator

POLINA BARSKOVA

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

» Read more

Translator

ANDREW JANCO

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

» Read more

Translator

OSTAP KIN

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

» Read more

Translator

OLGA LIVSHIN

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

» Read more

Comment

No Comments

ADD YOUR COMMENT


Browse poems

By original language »

By issue of MPT »

Go Digital

Subscribe to the digital edition of MPT for access to all back issues and to the Exactly app.» View free trial issue

Back to top
Supported by Arts Council England

Copyright © Modern Poetry in Translation and contributors
Website design ashbydesign
Developed by Code Frontiers
Powered by Storemill