Tatters of rock-crystal foliage
torn from the jittery night
by a garden light, shudder slowly
hiding their wind-driven fright.
The witchy Greek neighbor’s shadow
swings upward, viciously tall,
bird-headed, evil, stupendous,
breaking in half on the wall.
In the dry throat of a lampshade
a drumroll, a night moth’s unrest.
In a pickling jar vodka splashes
steeping with orange zest.
Darkness colluding with emptiness,
Sweet bitterness making mischief.
Into the present continuous
Eternity sneaks like a thief.
Лампа в саду вырывает
ночи испуганной клок
со слюдяною листвою,
прячущей ветреный вздрог.
вымахнет ростом отчаянным,
переломившись у стен.
В горле сухом абажура
гулкая дробь мотылька.
На апельсинных кожурках
водка внутри бутылька.
Сладкая горечь проказит,
тьма с пустотой заодно.
Вечность в мгновенье пролазит,
словно воришка в окно.
Valery Chereshnya was born in Odessa, Ukraine, in 1948, and now lives in St. Petersburg, Russia. He has authored five collections of poetry (among them “Recognition”, 2018), a book of essays “A View from Himself”, as well as many other publications in major Russian literary magazines.
Dmitri Manin is a physicist, programmer, and translator of poetry. His translations from English and French into Russian have appeared in several book collections. His latest work is a complete translation of Ted Hughes’ “Crow” (Jaromír Hladík Press, 2020) and Allen Ginsberg’s “The Howl, Kaddish and Other Poems” (Podpisnie Izdaniya, 2021). Dmitri’s Russian-to-English translations have been published in journals (Cardinal Points, Delos, The Café Review, Metamorphoses etc) and in Maria Stepanova’s “The Voice Over” (CUP, 2021). In 2017, his translation of a poem by Stepanova won the Compass Award competition.
A book of poems in Russian by Victor Enyutin (San Francisco, 1983). Victor Enyutin is a Russian writer, poet, and sociologist who emigrated to the US from the Soviet Union in 1975.
This collection of personal essays by a bi-national Russian/U.S. author offers glimpses into many things Soviet and post-Soviet: the sacred, the profane, the mundane, the little-discussed and the often-overlooked. What was a Soviet school dance like? Did communists go to church? Did communists listen to Donna Summer? If you want to find out, read on!
“Cold War Casual” is a collection of transcribed oral testimony and interviews translated from Russian into English and from English into Russian that delve into the effect of the events and the government propaganda of the Cold War era on regular citizens of countries on both sides of the Iron Curtain.
Julia Wiener was born in the USSR a few years before the Second World War; her youth was spent during the “Thaw” period, and her maturity coincided with the years of “Soviet stagnation”, which, in her case, ended with her emigration to Israel in the early 1970s. Her wartime childhood, her Komsomol-student youth, her subsequent disillusionment, her meetings with well-known writers (Andrei Platonov, Victor Nekrasov, etc.) are described in a humorous style and colorful detail. Julia brings to life colorful characters – from her Moscow communal apartment neighbors to a hippie London lord, or an Arab family, headed by a devotee of classical Russian literature. No less diverse are the landscapes against which the events unfold: the steppes of Kazakhstan, the Garden of Gethsemane, New York, Amsterdam, London.
Julia Wiener’s novels focus on those moments when illusory human existence collapses in the face of true life, be it spiritual purity, love, old age, or death.