The earth is burning

Rea Nikonova (Ры Никонова, Ry Nikonowa, Anna Tarshis, 1942-2014)

Die russische Dichterin Anna Tarshis, Künstlerin, Verlegerin, Avantgarde-Aktivistin, die unter dem Namen Ry Nikonowa (Ры Никонова) schrieb, starb am 10.3. im Alter von 72 Jahren in Kiel.



The earth is burning
But the fibre of laughter
is indissoluble

Six charred leaves drift
fools down the road
touching their damp roots
to the acrid warm earth

Sick barred leaves
drink transparent water
so that temples of fallen stems
can be raised up as a crown


Along the threads of veins
run mice

Along the spines of songs
crawl groans


I sit over grief
I warm myself . . .
I sit over grief
I chop into a log
I sit I say nothing over grief
while it seethes

Translated by Gerald Janecek

From: Modern Poetry in Translation. New Series No. 20 – 2002, S. 147.