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Slavic Interlude

March 19, 2009 by · No comments

David Cazden

Photo: luigi morante

Sali reads Turgenev, sits
next to a girl with loose
pants and a looped wallet chain.

They talk in airy tones
beside the diner window
where the sky is dense

as a Russian novel, and clouds nudge
ideas of rain
along the half bent trees.

They are involved, I think,
wanting to reach between words–
“When the hero died in his sleep,”

Sali says, “his wife sold his boots for food.”
I imagine boots
with worn tongues and squinted eyes,

leathery flesh like a book’s,
passed through reprints and generations.
I watch old words

taken up by slim hands.
And while Sali gives the girl a smile
I thought was meant for me

the laces of morning light
are already unraveling
over her arms–

Categories: Frontpage · poetry


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