PANEVĖŽYS, LITHUANIA. WINTER OF POETRY.

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Vidmante Jasukaityte

In memoriam poetess Elena Mezginaitė

What are we doing here?”snow, the confluence of rivers, a group of people… It’s cold out…

What are doing here,”which of us are really needed?

We pronounce words which they don’t say, usually,”but at the same time we aren’t talking either..

So what are we saying here, what do you think, is it poetry?

We cut out texts of solitude with blood like shards of glass”

We drank the spirit of solitude and chewed on the glass for just as long”

Small razor blades fall out of the mouth together with words”

We lived in a circus, we juggled knives and swallowed small blades…

Anodyne vapors of radiate from some of us… It was cold. December…

We had no home in this world, just as no one else has either, and there were no gloves”

We drank the cheap spirit of rejection, its bouquet induced dizziness and its vapors rose and spilled like the tide,”

We waded through the water like drunken moose on the edge of existence,

Destroying the fences of the pasture and trampling the crops..

What are doing here? They”love us? Who?

Which one, that man with his head stuck in a collar,

Stamping his feet so they don’t freeze, wiping his nose on his sleeve?

That woman in fur?

She’s beautiful… A real woman… Rich… Perhaps she is the sponsor?

I don’t remember which of them went along the fence at the beginning of February…

When on the other side… With ice-blue fingers I dug the snow out through the barbed-wire fence

And extended my hand… I don’t remember which of them turned away first

On meeting my hungry eyes….

I’m still digging…

It’s still going.

The moon still shines”there is no other light”

And I look like a shadow stretched across the blue snow.

I don’t recall who ran off ahead of us like a shadow,

Unable to countenance

a disgraced and condemned poetess.

What am I doing here now? What am I saying, is it poetry do you think?..

I am breaking, like sugared candy left over from the Christmas of childhood, frozen

fingers.

If I hit my hand on the fence post, it would shatter”it’s that frozen here.

If I froze to ice it wouldn’t hurt. There would be no blood. Only the sound.

No one would collect me anymore… Ever.

I don’t recall who that watchman was…

Who bravely and courageously went back and forth… Without rest, without sleep.

Without a thermos of tea through the blizzard. Waiting to be snowed in,

So no traces might remain…

I’m still walking.

I’m still digging…

I’m still kneeling…

Still looking into their eyes.

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