Mikhail Sinelnikov


I will not outstay and will not leave a sign,

But will knock and roll up the way I am.

An accidental guest, an absent – minded gaper,

I have brought you good news.


But at times I recollect and have dreams of

In my childhood so thoughtlessly and knavishly 

My dropping into a slot in a rotten floorboard

A hard pomegranate seed.


The sun has faded. The faces have tarnished.

But I see without rising my eyelids, –

The tree trunk is rustling and stirring.

And its scion is touching the house roof.



I am lying in the grass. The mint is washed by dew.

The piles of hay seem a bit flaring.

The dust is lightly pressed by the huge sky.

And the cloud is in a button leave.


I recall of a child’s sight angle.

And, trying to melt in young grass,

The sedge of pines makes suspicious

An ant crawling on the elbow.


There’s a half desert from the rib to groin.

While you are crawling, your life may pass away.

And the blue coarse shirt

Will replace the firmament in its eyes.



Kyrgyz Hunting

I was flipped and sprinkled over.  At once

I was torn from the trembling grass…

And the bean of the Sun over the copper wolf eye

Is being covered with the wig of an erne.

The steppe is getting overfilled with growl.

The ground is revolving and moving flat.

And the mouse hears the sleepy tramping of hooves.

And the mole is feeling the blow-back of guns.

Transformed by an evil cunning

With his face all wrinkled and basaltic

The hunter, smelling of a sheep, is going

And the wind is blowing with ashes and lead.

And the wolf is lying instinct with gravity

Already killed and washed by the dew.

And the mournful felicity of the coming death 

Is flowing in his eyes and touching his pupils.

The living flesh is getting overfilled with flame,

And the corpse is hot, yielding and with sharp ribs.

But the stuffy and animated ground layer

Smells of soil, blood and worms.

The Moon will rise

Over the vast area,

And the shadow of a bitch – wolf will be running here

To smell the heavy and greasy ground,

To yawl at the Moon.  And to guard the herds. 



Toprak – Cale  – the Castle of Ashes

To Gulsara Afidzhanova.  

I do not know a more deadly word than the Turk word toprak

That is ashes and ashes of ashes, and the timeline of the timeline, its time.

The scattered skull of a horse skeleton,

The stirrup shot through by the cracked arrow.


There is smoke over this tower and black smog over that one…

And the ashes and plague are flowing from the East.

Under the blue whiteness and scarlet blackness

The horizon is curling as the completion of the timelime.


The hoof is up in the air, the bow-string is breathing

And the shirt is burning slowly on the horseman.

But the merry grass is murmuring quickly

And the crunching of the ashes is heard in the whistling of arrows.


…The hilly firmament resembles a castle.

The clouds resemble the raid of the amazons.

And the green circle of lizards is dancing.

And copper snakes are swinging half asllep.


The feather grass and sultry blaze of dust are silent.

And the sand is leaking on the sand in its hot and dumb way. 

Onto a hill of eight layers a one-hundred –year old woman

Is coming with her great – granddaughter to milk her mares.


The big herd of horses is going, and its lava

Seems to her a multi -leg wave from the top of the hill.

The height has fallen, the depth has disappeared,

They have turned into silence and sloping flatness.


And in the old woman’s pupils like forty bright moons

The horses are flaming, as lily as the mountains.

And the grass is listening, and the herd of horses is listening 

To the inarticulate talks of the mistress of the century. 


“I am the echo and the toprak. Oh, eternity, I am yours!

An hour has finished and the evening is coming to its end.

I am the sand of atoms and scale of skin.

And the scaring image of death resembles mine  a little.


Having thought that speech, she is falling asleep

And scooping the sand with her palms.

And the hot hill gets pierced with a drop of milk.

The instant of time is has faded. The arm and udder are alive.


… And children are drinking koumiss. And one is breathing easily.

And the grease and watery trembling of life are flowing into the ground.

And milk and honey are getting sweeter with every passing day.

And the cold of  petals and hot trembling of a rose.


The water is coming out of the bowels of the earth as a tear.

And sward is triumphing in the clefts of the grave,

And the cerulean eyes of a stone old woman

Are peeping into the distance and dreaming frowningly.


The Dream of Silkmoth 

To become a night butterfly, gluttonous and fat,

Strolling under the Moon in such a sweet and random way.

But three kilometers of dreams, frozen as saliva

Are leading down from the height of ethereal insomnia.


That was how was falling into dreams , impassive and wonderful,

The boundless country, leaning over you.

Oh, silkmoth! You remember

The blue firmament, over the world, of your Subcelestial motherland.


The shadows of  transparent tinctures were gliding in the darkness,

But as a bean of the Sun on the golden glass

The thread of  singing dreams was opalescing, 

Was streaming in a canoe and flowing into the new century.


A bit bluish shadow of the wings used to

Blink like the Moon, strolling under the Moon…

You cannot unwind with a wing

Three kilometers of  dreams, forged as cottonwool, frozen as salvia.


Your metamorphose is performing again.

Will you dream in a cerulean of hot dreams,

Oh, silkmoth, in your raving metapsychosis,

Will you dream of a winter forest and music of birches?


Round soul, fleshless monade,

Will you hear just once through the flow of clouds,

One hundred thousands of spindles in a night factory,

Their clatter and revelry, and the wet noise of  the silk?


But the butterfly is flicking, fresh and bluish,

On the fly catching a snowflake as its shadow.

And on the silkmoth’s wings are floating merrily

The lily eyes of the resurrected worm.    


But now it is hanging, touching the horizon,

Almost sunk into the noisy silk of the sky…

But the black ink contour of a mulberry forest

Is attracting again and leading into dreams.


And the mulberry leaf of the lost paradise

Is squeezing the bouncy copper of rusty tendons.

And, opening the nudity of the earth for a moment,

Is soaring into the blue, unable to die.




The waters of evening snow are floating down the course of a blade. 

The light black is pouring on the silver river.

The stony clouds are right in front of me.

And airy mountains are standing right above my head.


The cloud will stand for a while and its soul will get some peace.

The horse will hit with its hoof, the horseman will wave its whip.

The small river will start off for a long journey,

The waves will go at a trot, the mountains will set off  at full gallop.


In the middle of the river the horse will look back.

In the middle of the river the horseman will get off the horse.

Only the hour which has just passed, only yesterday’s look,

Without bending  in a saddle are hurrying into tomorrow.


The red tomorrow is rising at the edge of the world,

But the erne covered with its wing the subcelestial circle.

My horses are at the distance, the waves passed long ago,

The clouds already passed by mountain crossing.


I see my face forty years later.

The wrinkled water is waving its grey beard.

My six – year – old grandson is racing the herd, whistling.

Forty thousand sheep will go their own way…  


The sheep are sleeping on their feet, the rivers are going backwards.

Again I am riding my racer for the first time.

I see myself again seventy year ago.

The horse is catching with its teeth a piece of blue sky.


The banks have met and disparted, and rushed off.

The spruce, nutwood and barberry are running apart.

The river is floating shrieking as alaman- baiga,

The roaring wave is falling with its head down. 


The water is demolishing, at full tilt, forty heavy rocks.

I see my face on a horse’s sweating sides

On pink and gold, smooth horses’ backs

There is the high sky, blue sky floating.


The arm is strong again, the fiery eye is sharp,

I see the star falling as a spark in three hundred milestones.

The red bear – fire is rushing about in the darkness,

And the shaggy skin of the fire is moving, roaring.


Now I am having a nap on the rock, the rock has fallen asleep nearby.

The river is flowing into the sky, the sky is walking on the water.

On the one bank a bee is looking for a prey,

On the other bank a wild cherry tree is blossoming.


The Lake of Paleostomy

The bank of Paleostomy are deserted,

There the ground, covered with fish,

Is trembling and moving in a deadly languor,

Moving the tails deliriously.


The same way, the heart, grabbed by a tight push-net,

Is squeezed and petted by  fisherman’s arms.

He, who was ladies’ first and the latest,

Was living and living, dying a bit




Elena Anatolyevna entered

Our house from Atbasar. It was summer.

The arm and cigarette are hardly seen

Over there – beyond the unwashed window. From the corner

The senator’s grizzling daughter 

Was looking meanly, and talking about Proust,

Examining tomatoes in insect – poweder

And the whole manor. Striving to help her

Her parents got tired. In the clouds of dust

The gardens were blossoming and yielding so much fruit 

That the peaches were tapping day and night.

And no worries. The soil layer

Will get unlocked, slightly touched a the spade

And the sky above the Allah’s land

Was getting rose at the sloping dawn.

And everything was leaking as a burst watermelon,

And pouring out with honey at midnight…

The profile of a crooked witch was scaring,

The amber of her teeth and pecky beads.

She would sometimes in public

Extenuate the town authorities, but suddenly,

Having decided to spend her leisure time on household

Was planting orchids in her garden.

After that – to pluck them out was flying 

An angry swallow…

But more often she was watching the aryk,

Where a miserable boy was sinking while saving

A ship made of a newspaper.

With a personage of quite a different rank

I made friends with at the edge of the world.

But  Asiatic poplars were rumbling,

Dried apricots were crumbling and floating.

And the water was coming. From the cold spring

By wide pushes. From China.

Unwinding its fibers as hair,  

Bricky as tea, grumbling dully.

And so many voice were heard

In the karakul of hazel woods,

And the Kyrgyzs were riding in fox hats,

Pleased with life and ruddy grey..

And the open window overlooking Monmartre 

For some reason I remembered. The fresh air  

And scents of flowers were the same

As when flinging on the kimono

The body was entering a hotel resonant shower room.

While the soul , whispering words of Claudel

Was spreading its light wings.

The water was making noise, slopping and going.

And Caruso was singing in the hotel room next door.

In a higher pitch… As a gown off  a shoulder

The burden of a clinking life was falling.

“Santa Lucia”. And the water, grumbling… 




You will go on the ditch – will not notice the grass,

At hot noon will fall asleep under the tent of the blueness

And will wake up on your way, maybe in a year,

And in the desert a weak voice will push you.

A non-abating fear lived in that voice,

That voice was burning on the invisible fires.

And when it was jingling, and when it was fading,

And floating above the letters, and resurrecting into the words,

You longed for prolonging the day getting golden

And banishing and melting the persistent shadow.

But when that voice was being carried by the wires,

The river water was getting more transparent,

The sky was more blue, the grass – younger,

The life was infinite and mother was not dead.




Since, after changing my dream,

I do no better than sweeping the street

By a small temple,

I see the bottom of people’s river,

Bare feet, heels

And the red spits of a rickshaw

Flying stubbornly.


He knows, sick of town,

The heat of life, the fervor of death.

And fast, as if being burnt,

He flees into a different world, 

And before his back soars

A goddess in a blue sari!


Who cares for the smoke of death and the mist of life,

While his cart is heavy!

The night has passed anxiously

And the day is steaming blue – grey,

And I do want through that quickness

To grab the two sticks on the fly

And with betel in my mouth

To run into the alive emptiness

For a handful of rice.



Superfluous Memory

The faster the life is stifling,

The more greedy and more passionately I breathe,

The superfluous memory bothers me,

I beg for a little forgetfulness.


I am sick and tired of my memory – it is the same

Putting on of the shed skin,

Sinking into thousands of days…

Ten years more foolish and younger,

Twenty years fresher and more honest.


In that flight from a pain to a pain,

Shining through the colored worlds,

Those years are like a sigh when getting an injection,

The return to a nurse’s face. 



A burning day is like a cup of spicy mix…

Two scenting flowers

Gave me a gardener in Benares,

Who, maybe, lived over centuries.


Whatever be the century – the gallery is the same

Of barbers, smiths, money – changers…

The same faces, but getting old

I personally see I have lost my face.


The stuffy day, and –  no relieving blowholes,

The eternal river without banks,

Will one feel indifferent for people,

India, in the crowd of your gods?


But over there, where they have just burnt

Somebody’s flesh and they are carrying ashes from the fire,

The dust is curling, and – smaller than that dust

Are the warm ashes of silver color.



Again the sea coast, populous and crowded, 

It was populated by you there…

And keeps bringing its aquamarines

And keeps darkening the fast water.


I keep feeling we have not finished talking…

When suddenly a new time has come,

Here the splashes of blue dust got black,

All projectors started bawling.


At the exodus of live, in the middle of the summer

Beyond the horizon into desperation I will prolong

My thought of you, fierce outcry of light,

The message from a ship to a ship.




To A. P. Medzirov

Monasteries on the north of Moldova…

So new for an empty heart

The merry spring young

Blueness of the sky on time-worn frescos there.   


It is not hidden by heats and frosts,

They bore them all in blizzards and rains.

Those ornaments are shinning from outside.

Judge about the disappeared stilly.


The heart is getting hopped with an intoxicating cerulean

And with that what will be erased by the centuries,

But there is more blue pain over the meadow,

Over the cloud looking haughtily from above.




There were the samples and dress – patterns lying everywhere

And clews jumping all around the place.

They seemed heavy with happiness and sadness,

But easy in memory.


How amazingly we were drinking sparkling wine, having scattered the sewing around!  

Without getting tired of drinking…

Suddenly you unstrung everything we liked,

By biting off the thread.


When dressed in cloack down to your feet with a satin dog in the camisole 

You are crossing the meadow,

Where are those dress – patterns, pricks, quick flight of moth,

Where is that room? When suddenly


You will inhale all our life, all life – at a time:

The darkness, snow behind the windows,

My wildish look, the wadding of a tailor’s block,

And the smell of an iron.




The dog gnawed a pearl,

The golden emptiness is only

Left to you, it makes no sense,

But you cannot separate the ring and the finger.


Out of the fading, crippled life

I keep harping on you: “Live, live!”

Love is firmer and more durable,

Then the light and joy of love. 




The rusty grey Semirechye,

Where, like life, viscously, heavily

Women have that submissive, ovine,

Appeasing warmth.


Like bird’s broken wings

Long sleeves of dresses are flowing,

The captured and tender grandeur

Was shaded blue by the blueness of the sky.


Like a desert is drawn to a desert,

These faces want to get closer,

And the blue air is descending in pillars

Upon the country of wanders and losses.


Upon the country which has no limits – 

And the dawn is flowing into a down,-

Upon the country where the time has flown,

Draining souls and seas.


With its slakeless thirst

I am standing in the desert, looking behind

The trains, which always rush past

Nonverbal sorrows and years.



(Semirechye is a historical area in Central Asia ,nowadays the territory of Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. It was populated by nomads for centuries).  



A store on the way to Agra. A girl with her granatum eyes

Is strictly observing silver and turquoise.

The leather is shabby. But the owner in a deep amazement 

Is saying: I just sew from the leather, the gods make goats!”


Those sinewy arms have become ashes, probably. 

The daughter’s daughter is trading. The gods are riding the araba…

Again, flowing, the colored stains of India are groaning – 

The life covered with a cloth of a secret thought of you.


Because that feeling has somehow coincided with India,

Covered the road dust and  –  is flaming onwards

Under a deep red arch

 there is a white ghost of Tadj – Makhal,

Ascending into the sky and standing in the bosom



Sanskrit always sparkles in this speech,

Throughout years and time-worn misfortunes

Grey pythoness’s prediction says,

More ancient than the Veda.


Are floating, bothering the thicket of taiga,

Invisible rivers of nirvana,

And in women’s embellishments and hysterics’ screams

“Ramayanas” are whanging the drums.


Is shaking in the battle of word roots

An emerald miracle of the land…

Once I will get tired of my life,

Will sit down under an oak as Buddha.


Congealing in thick multi-jingling silence 

I will dress up in dreams and fires.

As dark waves will rush up to me

Foggy Mara’s daughters.


I married this voice,

Which squeezed my heart with a tight string

With the intonation breathing with the color

Of heavenly forests and with something unsung.


It is calling unto childhood and summer…


Ah, it was in vain, when sliding as a rebound

Another voice perished me!



I was leading my brother away from dystrophy,

Was saving my father, I told my mother

To go with an orphanage to the deep Russia,

And eat fathen, wait out the rafale.


In about five years, swollen, with sad eyes

I came to them…Like the cold of tingling

Sometimes the orders get delivered to me

From the future, from the nonexistence.



You used to be a girl with an unearthly smile,

Now you are a woman with a worldly grin.

All your ages were flying over me

And walking somewhere nearby and not living with me.

And everything which was burning my heart and cost me blood

Has merged into a whole one forever and turned into a poem.

I realized so late: poetry is not in the word,

But only in the connection of words, near and above them.



Lost Cat

Absorbing the sea of scents and tastes,

Your master of the house in the empty space

Keeps waiting for your coming back and miauwing out,

Being made flesh and waving your tail.

You are somewhere, in the crossroads of the worlds,

The roadside wild grass appears.

One of you from Cairo to Capetown 

Came through the horror of the jungle and savannas.

These attachments are still strong,

Yet he himself had better leave…

Animals and children are running into the fog,

Anticipating the same darkness at home.



The Land

The exulting sound of burdensome complaints,

The singing of  poor India,

The tencles of black and bronze arms,

Stretched passionately towards food.

The loose ancient Mother –Land,

You did not get tired, giving birth.

Again you got nude, though since February

You bore three harvests!

Again you want to be taken,

Be lifted up and overturned,

With your sharp breast being twitched

Both in October and July.

The water embraces you tenderly,

Sweet and dark in silt…

And you will sing!.. nowhere no one

Has ever been loved so much as you are.


Indian Dances

To N.Ivanova, E.Petrova

From what ruthless grief,

How without looking jump into the window,

Russian girls ran away

To an episode of an Indian movie?


But not a temple, not a Nizam harem,

Only school was waiting for them in India,

Stubbornly excruciating the souls,

Transforming their bodies powerfully.


There, where the faith rules the muscles

And the dreams flow into touchstone,

A bayadere was rushing and congealing,

Not showing her back to the deity.


Here, to master the knowledge,

By the force of born tortured 

To embrace the emptiness with a thousand arms

And to soar above thousands of arms.


The fluctuation of a body to turn

Into that passion, and with the whirlwind of swarthy races

In a deadly storm of Radjastkhan

Russia was rushing, dancing.



Garbage, poverty, dirt of disregard,

Alleyways, which have no

Exit to the nonsense of movement,

Only the Sun, only the light of stars.


I wanted to turn away from everything,

To put on a torn cloth,

And your lost faces

Are flowing in scorching twilight.



Venture and earn an eternal death

By living tens of righteous lives!

Always surrounded by flickering lie

You get astonished by their cheapness.


But it is sweet before your one has intermitted

To see peoples and countries…

In the Sea of Suffering you are a big wave

Running away from nirvana.



Again Her dizzying scent,

Her exhausting heat,

Perceiving drowsiness,

Exultingly sick world.

And always is mercifully severe

The amiable look of Mahavira,

And the flocks of cows are marching,

The nude chocolate is running.

Here appears white in a close crowd

Hurrying Leo Tolstoi.

And behind his family’s screaming,

And behind the wave of his crutch – 

Are the trampled ants

And sunk spiders.


Indian Holiday

The road is strewed with the flowers of evil,

But wearing the necklaces from the flowers of kindness

The yard enter the god’s incarnations,

And you are in their circle in the middle of the yard.


It is so good to walk among the peacocks

And believe in life having no end!

Here someone’s souls are wandering in long dresses,

You will not recall a single face.



After buying an aromatic bread at the baker’s

Will wander along the stinking and golden

Side street getting dark quickly

Through thirst, need, expectation, languor.

Escaping that girl with huge eyes

Between her eyes guessing a little spot of lepra…

Here the property of  a caste will call on

And the jewelry of beggars will start twinkling. 



All eyed and all-graspingly thin

Is the judge of our Supreme Quarrels,

But I guess He is a child,

Refining his pattern.


Now, changeable as a child is,

He has dropped his toy and  – thwack:

To the sand started hailing 

The disintegrated kaleidoscope of centuries.



The autumn air,  prickly at alveoli,

The fullness of silence and life,

Among the freely nude branches

The last take-off of the last leaf.


The life has glimpsed in those eternal views

And has turned into a single sigh.

The inhale became sweeter and the exhale – unhappier,

As if there is depth of  epochs in lungs.



“The movement is everything…” There is no bolder thought…

“But the aim is nothing”. All that blossoming life

I have run through in several instants

And have discovered the simplicity of the truth.


And everything which happened is basically work,

There is no need in beginnings and ends…

To get to something, sweating, want

Lovers and sweaty wrestlers. 




It seems to me that this avatar,

Must not be the last one. I have no power

To fall out of love with neither the dead, nor the alive.


Oh, I have not fed crocodiles with the body

And have not extinguished desires in time,

But I am perceiving the truth and see

The minutes of solitude! Once

Among the forests of dozy Mongolia

I was walking long along the river bank.

The trees were so ancient

That you could meet a dinosaur.

A dim smile was streaming in the thicket,

I was reading it in the sky with appearing ripples,

Was catching it in the stopped course

And found on my own face.


Solitude is the key. Christ

Is ready to be present among the few.

Allah seems to love crowds of people.

But you are always alone with Buddha.

And there is no deity, no pilgrim,

But just a jump into aflame rings

“Of the Great May Be..” Wae is me.

No rhyme


The cold realm of Pluto,

His trashy planet,

Is blackening in the thicket of horizon,

There is nothing for me there.


And then – what an embodiment

In the earth firstborn warmth!

I have lived and have not found peace,

Having walked on the green Earth.


Where to, satiated with storm,

Will the soul fly in silence?

May be, to the yellow Mercury,

Not fading in the quenchless flame.




The old Arab, who looks like his forefather,

Frightening with the blueness of his eyeholes,

His toothless laughter and dirty skin,

Is gravely twitching the tight string.


The string is trembling, having cried out in so strained a way

From the depth of steppe innumerable years,

Where James heard that music,

Christ and Mohammed were listening to it attentively.


The world is getting older, and more and more often

The Archangel’s calling horn seems here,

But that sound, lingeringly vital,

Is like milk, like childhood and fate. 




Here is the mirror… Noise and rage are in vain,

But you understand that by the end,

Only in senility you can comprehend senility,

And I did not know what my Father thought.

He suddenly saw Hippocrates’ mask…

It was not that he was mourning over his death – 

He was grieved by my loss

And he was watching standing on the edge

Of those areas one cannot return from,

Like I am standing by the mirror now.



Between the tracks of a field path

There is oblivion of ruderal grass.

That funny wisp,

That is its spike!

That useless seed,

Without perceiving insults,

Like embodied time

Is flying with the wind in vain.




By the issue of the free will

I have been tortured all my life,

I am standing in a Russian winter field

And do not realize the freedom.


There’s plenty of it overseas,

From where they send us

Erotica with cool slogans,

Negros’ cast – off clothes, chewing gum.


It is alien for mosques,

Whose domes’ blueness

Exulting at the dawn

Is godly and clear.


But in the middle of snow – wreath,

Where I lost the thread of my thought,

It is not possible to solve that issue,

All I can do is live.



So, the year has passed. What was the year like?

Could that year be overwhelmed

With the concurrence of habitual hardships

And new peddling worries?


Actually there is just that road left

Where you and me together were going by the sea,

And was either crunching a bit

Or singing the coast sand.



Both Siberian plague, and explosions,

And jihad spreading its wings…

But in the ravine off a frowning osier

The yellowed leaves are flying.

What can be more casual and light – weighted!

But has been buried on the slope of gills

Singing a downy song

The most tender and devoted friend.

On miserable troublesome monotonies  

Of expectations, worries, labor

With a scanty life of domestic animals 

Our years are embracing.



I am taking the empire into my hand

As a silk cloth.

In the same way in a Benares store was clapping

The bargainer, in front of me onto the floor

Dropping a brocade stuff,

Like an early morning purple.


But suddenly it turned paler than a bass,

A grey day reigned,

Everything is collapsing and crumbling in fingers,

And houses and faces are spattering,

Joss houses and minarets are flowing,

Warmed with a touch…

But there is nothing in the world

More precious than villages weaved of silver. 



Sups rice, disallowing pilaf

The country of India.

The authority of gobblers of cows

Was destined to it.

And what – they are now in hell,

And again is in charge

The beu – monde of  wandering cows

And noble castes.

A middle – aged goddess

Who extravagated into thick mist

Was being milked right there in the corner

And patted on the back.

The sad glass of her eyes

I was contemplating before

Five thousand years had leaked

In a current of milk.



The callous universe is too precise,

But flows, streams other truths

Fighting with it with its sweet afterburning

India’s smoke of another existence.

India is like a meditation of a dying,

A mixture of the past with an admixture of the future,

Appearing hazily, melting

And living nonexistently.



For merry monkeys

Creeping on hills

To get spicy alms

It is time to descent to the temple.

There to your image

Hundreds of castes are praying,

The drums are whanging in shots…

Who will give alms to you?

Maybe, gods are everywhere,

Maybe a deity

Is nude on the road… 

How can you recognize that?

Perennially a beggar daddles,

Perennially at the wave of an arm

Yapping, rush to food

Lost puppies.

With divine and with human

Hurts and cures here

Of pity and cruelty

Ever-living mixture.



After a life it is good to discover

In the dim past another variant,

To turn into pearls the run -off days

Along the length of those garlands.


Look: it did happen then!

No matter you cannot change anything,

You cannot improve it even a little bit,

But the luciferous thread is flaming!  



The thoughts were clear, the legs were nimble – footed,

Sinking into the current of a tide – rip,

Were so far away and were attracting old people

With the depth of their antiquity.


I see the orifice of the river, the blue ridge,

And I am anticipating the waves of seas,

Though, toddling, I am pottering along dunes,

For some reason I have not become wiser.


Suddenly I am rushing off, am hoppingly running and singing,

I do not care for the experience of collected years!

I am slowly learning the secret of senility,

I realize there is no senility.




A withered, tattooed elephant,

Cautiously gloomy,

Has risen, gasping, onto a rocky slope,

Has taken me to Jaipur.

And I am standing in maharaja’s palace

In the fire of precious stones,

And I see my life glimpsing

And a thousand of long ones after it.

But it seems the elephant appears in any of them,

He is true to itself and happy with his destiny,

And the labor can’t come to the end…

With an iron goad to the battle

A mahaut would race him.

Through large pearls of senile tears

A blissful dream is drawing on …

When he was transporting to haughty Selevk

King Chandragupta.    

ABAB To S. Zaitsev.


Smoky – pink, tenderly pale

The small Moon is fading 

Above the Sultan’s gardens,

And the soul in that town of dreams 

Is illuminated by light pearl 

And is beamed with its purity.


The confession is listened by the Moon

And yard monkey.  



When it became clear to me that we came together

Not for a season – but for the rest of our days,

I burnt all photographs and letters

From my previous story.


So that pile was moldering, crumpling,

And the caravan of women’s faces was blackening…

After giving away my whole life to the fire,

I was watching years- to- come. 


And I myself, flaming with fallen leaves,

Like her small stream of smoke floating into the blueness,

I will adopt your smile for ever,

Will live long in your grief.




The dogs are yapping in a ravine.

Maybe they met a bum

And are scared of the dark fix,

But are shrieking as they are supposed to.


Or a mongrel, singing,

Turned everyone on, and itself

Because of the whiteness of full Moon

Is slowly getting crazy.


Or a rambling pack,

Going on a long trip,

Is howling, still discussing

The candidate for a leader.




To Viktor Goffman

What a strange heritage – 

The old laces frozen with decay,

My mother’s rural childhood,

Is as close as if it were mine.

Calves were basking by the stove

And the spring was not in a hurry to come.

Once in long winters  

The whiteness was being plaited long.

The grandmother was a lacemaker.

Flickering in the field up to now 

A white thread is glistening like silver,

White blizzard is circling.

Like the soot which has raided

On the flitches of fences,

The time lay down, and 

No hut must have survived.

But in the more frequent race

Of intangible years

One wants to rush 

Into pure snows, following the snowstorm.

For the rough weather to plait

In the tatters of its darkness

To cover its stars

Snowy roses, crosses.

For, as the Russian prose,

Into the poem came

Those ornaments of frost

With the lumps of frozen ground.



My loss seems recent.

As if I were still holding

My dying brother’s hand,

With him wandering to the earthly border.


Am not scared of any road

Because is still strong

His cooling, remembering much,

Tender at parting hand.



When the sole, single in the world,

Is looking at its reflection,

There is only one temptation in the empty apartment – 

To come into the nonexistence as into the mirror.


To see my twin sooner, with whom

I parted for so many long years…

My soul down the mirror corridor

Will be going to him to the too bright light.



Old Teacher

An old teacher. But, my goodness, 

He was old even in the shine of a far – off day,

In those years when he was much younger

Than present – day old I!


But, having flown over two oceans,

Again his voice on the phone,

Both reproachfully and contritely

Gives despair and triumph.


Is teaching again…dejectedly, not strictly…

With the ache of heart beating

Is ultimately crying something from the threshold

A piteous voice of nonexistence.



Himalayan Bus

Mass executions of the Utopians

Had been before I was born,

But the outburst of dreams was frantic,

The antiworld has grown from nothing.


I spent years in the land of utopias,

But when it ruined,

The truth and lie for me were replaced by the opium

Of long traveling and colored dreams.


…That flight smells of marihuana,

They are drying cannabis along the road. 

Only I, breathless due to the heat,

Am dreaming in the haze heat of utopias.



I was falling asleep on a high tree,

Dropping the book of fairly tales, and asleep I

Was surrounded by the crowded East

And blueness, which bent down to me.

I could live on Asiatic poplars

To listen for ever to the vague noise of those giants,

I am ten years old and far from the Ganges,

But the poplars are roaring about the future…

The praying drums were floating,

And floating and floating, flickering before me,

And years were passing, and I saw countries,

And suddenly realized the circle of Earth is throng. 

But the Indian street is holy,

Where the dust of times, dregs from fine – meshed sieves,

All that mixture of languor and molder

Is hanging in the impassive air.

Because that dream, which we cherish in childhood,

Keeps its magic also in the monotonies,

And smelling of typographic glue

Fairly tales are marvelous,  – and the dearest of all.



My distant ancestor Adam,

Who was wandering so long ago,

Was finding a replacement for the gardens of Eden

In the underbrush of Ceylon.


I was there once,

Where days, blissfully faded, are flowing,

And the ocean hush is pampering

Prehistorical rocks.


My black brother with a ring in his nose

Held out to me a wisp of postcards,

But that terrible beauty

Cannot be contained into a bible scroll.


The long glance, and my evening,

Anticipating banishment well in advance, 

I fed up with that caustic blueness

And stopped distress.


I know the Motherland is only one,

The Lord is responsive even in anger,

And the eternal spring breathes

With the reminder of Eve.



Wooden, strange

Are Common Slavic gods,

I will not pray to you,

But in a dozy road

Among forests and cut – over lands

You are appearing

Above gelid rivers

Like the murmur of leaves.


In the thicket of dead gloom

Appeared to me 

A three- headed body

In a split pine.


Like verbal,

More antique that Russian folk epic,

Is that wooden power

Of naked roots.


In the dark talks and cozening

God Svetovit is glimmering, 

Golden laces

Let at least him keep!

ABAB  (Svetovit is a Slavic pagan god, personalization of light. The name Svetovit has the morphological root “Light” in the Russian language)


To the Indian translator: Mikhail Sinelnikov.  Poems.  That collection of poems contains mostly short poems, free of specific terminology and which do not require detailed knowledge of Russian everyday realia.  It contains a lot of texts based on Indian context (Sinelnikov is the author of Holy Evening, Moscow, 2006. That book of poems is totally dedicated to India). Except  Solitude , all poems of the given collection are rhymed, its type indicated below each of them, with many alliterations.

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