Dear Darkness

By ALEXEI TSVETKOV

 

myrtle our neighbor on the left side had
a headache with her ron the vietnam vet
fading from parkinson’s connie whose house
bulged into our backyard was a nurse who spent
her summer days sun-bathing in the nude
stirring my blood up in my swallow’s nest
and on the right was spencer the attorney
at law with dawn his nitwit of a wife
as i had one of mine with whom i was
in love then

 

in my waking hours i wondered
whether the town and all these people were
for real since once asleep i felt i was
the same old rascal with his bevy of
hard-drinking pals as i once was in russia
the only oddity was all of them
were speaking english in my dreams i felt
my new persona being a ruse or worse
a snake who’d swallowed my past life and sported
my memories as if they were his by right

 

 

 

like some d’artagnan when twenty years after
i visited the place there was no ron
to speak of myrtle joined him in his vale
of inexistence spencer the attorney
at law moved on after his wife had been
pinned to a wall by a delivery truck
connie the source of the sad news looked like
a wasted hag with her brown elephant skin
we are the only ones still hale she said
good grief i thought who are the fucking we

 

when i am done for and the primal darkness
fills up my eye-holes clogs my nostrils jams
the mandibles i will still have the last
question to ask of it who was this person
that lived my life which of the two was i
speak so that one may mourn the other have
mercy on us oh please dear darkness speak
Alexei Tsvetkov is a Russian poet and essayist with several published poetry collections to his credit. 

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Dear Darkness

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