Herman Lukomnikov. Translated by Dmitri Manin

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Herman Lukomnikov. Translated by Dmitri Manin
Wassily Kandinsky. Klänge print (1913) Original from The Art Institute of Chicago. In public domain.
Herman Lukomnikov. Translated by Dmitri Manin

ask not
the proof is in the puting
it has us bloating
иного нет
у нас путит
нас крючит
и мутит

* * *

Arise, great motherland, and fight!
Your noble rage must swell
Against the heinous fascist blight,
Against your own damn self.
Вставай, страна огромная,
Вставай на смертный бой
С фашистской силой тёмною,
С самою, блядь, собой.

* * *

I was a genius, but we can’t
Stagnate: a short time later
I’m a Russian occupant
And also Russia’s traitor.
Был я гений и талант
Эти вехи пройдены
Стал российский оккупант
И предатель Родины

* * *

“Yes, we’ve noticed, sure, we know:
Something dreadful has occurred.”
“Why, then, haven’t you said a word?”
“It just wasn’t apropos.”
— Мы, конечно, примечали:
Что-то страшное стряслось.
— Ну а что же вы молчали?
— Как-то к слову не пришлось.

* * *

this movie
holds no interest for me
why the hell
do i have
to keep watching
это кино
мне больше
не интересно
ну почему
я должен
его смотреть

* * *

there is
no covid
in existence
from it
there are
actually there is
no death at all
не существует
от него
не умираешь
точно так же
не существует
и вообще
смерти нет

About the Author:

Herman lukomnikov photo
Herman Lukomnikov
Moscow, Russia

Herman Lukomnikov was born in 1962 in Baku and has lived in Moscow since 1975. Since 1990, he has performed texts and performances. His first published poems appeared in “The Humanitarian Fund” newspaper. He participated in festivals and had palindrome pieces published in
anthologies. He was the winner of the Russian-Ukrainian Poetry Slam in Lviv (2007) and the All-Russian Slam in Voronezh (2014) and vice-champion of the World Slam in Paris (2015). He played the Fool in D. Krymov’s play “Boris” based on Pushkin’s “Boris Godunov”. He has authored 19 published books of poetry. His poems were also published in “Samizdat Veka” (an anthology), “Poems of the Last Time” (an anthology), as well as in major Russian magazines such as “Znamya,” “Volga,” “Ogonyok,” “New Literary Review,” “Vozdukh,” “Solo,” etc. His poems have been translated into 14 languages.

About the Translator:

manin_2021 (1)
Dmitri Manin
California, USA

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 Stepanova’s poem won the Compass Award competition. “Columns,” his new book of translations of Nikolai Zabolotsky’s poems, was published by Arc Publications in 2023 (https://eastwestliteraryforum.com/books/nikolai-zabolotsky-columns-poems).

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