Dmitry Raskin. “They read names…”

Also in World:

1. file6mw2mma6i80r40w29mr
Dmitry Raskin. "They read names..."

Early in the morning, they read from a piece of paper,

From morning till night.

Old men read, students read,

They read by the Solovetsky stone,

They read by countless cemeteries,

And by countless ravines of this swollen, forgetful homeland;

They read names in Rome,

They read them in Paris,

And in Jerusalem,

In Berlin, in Toronto…

Surname, first name, patronymic, profession, age —

          shot, shot, shot.

Skvortsov, Nigmatulin, Ginsburg,

watchman, worker, doctor,

sixty years old, twenty-five, forty-nine —

          shot, shot, shot.

Feoktistov, Usvyatskaya, Haikin,

engineer, saleswoman, professor.

thirty-four years old, nineteen, forty —

          shot, shot, shot.

Lerner, Safonov, Smirnov,

cashier, nobleman, peasant,

fifty-two, sixty-three, thirty-five…

A stooge pontificates from the pulpit:

“This was done for the great Goal, for the great Power of our Homeland, for the sake of the great Power.”

Two buddies talk, sigh:

“Pity the people, of course, but the sausage was cheap.”

As for the registry of “foreign agents” — some will just shrug it off, it’s not their problem,

others will say there is no smoke without fire and not everything is so straighforward.

They read, from morning till evening:

Surname, first name, fate —

          shot, shot, shot…


Translated from Russian

About the Author:

1. Пхото.
Dmitry Raskin
born in Nizhny Novgorod

Dmitry Raskin (born in 1965) is a poet, writer, and playwright. Raskin has authored several books of intellectual prose, including novels “Chronicles of Paradise” (2013) and “Boris Superfin” (2017); the latter won the International Competition Best Book of the Year 2020 (Germany). He has also authored a number of science fiction works, e.g. “Masquerade of Worlds,” “Destiny and Other Attractions,” and two poetry collections. For Raskin, free verse is a way of thinking as well as a way of living.

Dmitry Raskin Дмитрий Раскин
by Ian Probstein

A new collection of poems by Ian Probstein. (In Russian)

by Ilya Perelmuter (editor)

Launched in 2012, “Four Centuries” is an international electronic magazine of Russian poetry in translation.

by Ilya Ehrenburg

Ilya Ehrenburg (1891–1967) was one of the most prolific Russian writers of the twentieth century.  Babi Yar and Other Poems, translated by Anna Krushelnitskaya, is a representative selection of Ehrenburg’s poetry, available in English for the first time.

by William Conelly

Young readers will love this delightful work of children’s verse by poet William Conelly, accompanied by Nadia Kossman’s imaginative, evocative illustrations.

by Maria Galina

A book of poems by Maria Galina, put together and completed exactly one day before the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. This is Galina’s seventh book of poems. With translations by Anna Halberstadt and Ainsley Morse.

by Aleksandr Kabanov

The first bilingual (Russian-English) collection of poems by Aleksandr Kabanov, one of Ukraine’s major poets, “Elements for God” includes poems that predicted – and now chronicle – Russia’s aggression against Ukraine.

Three Questions. A Documentary by Vita Shtivelman
Play Video
Poetry Reading in Honor of Brodsky’s 81st Birthday
Length: 1:35:40