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Cold
That was all I felt
Not a broken bone or wounded flesh
Just cold
I'm breathing heavy but I'm not panicking
My breath forms a cloud around my face
Before disappearing into the fading skyline
I knew something was wrong
I knew because there was nothing wrong with me

My eyes were polluted with the sight of death
Carnage at my feet
Life leaving their blood and bone host
Lives more important than mine
Yet I was chosen
I was the one fate decided to keep
It were as if hands were plunged into the mud and grief
To spare me the tarnish
The light in the dark hollow
Or the dark in the light bastion

A void captured my true emotions
Holding them captive until I figure it out
The papers had their stories of me
"Miracle Man" they called me
The one death forgot
The one who escaped a tragedy
Without a scratch to show truth
A walking folklore
A bedtime story for the kids
Any other man would have felt blessed
Lucky or even grateful perhaps
I just felt cold

Sleep became a chore, and the bottom of the pint became my guilt
One day I bring my gaze from upon my mug
To see a man dressed in purpose
A man with a stare
A man with a story
A man of pain and misfortune
He didn't have to say anything
He knew
I knew
We could feel it
The cold followed us, ever looming on our shoulders bare
Through those blank faces that torment our memories
Constantly reminding us of the burden we choose to carry
Through all the dust, fire, and filth there stood us

Anomalies
Lupus- May 21
My ubvob
How much you mean to me
There’s no other future I can see
No other place I’d rather be

Always want to be with you
Together we’ll get through  
Love each other too
More than what we already do

Without you I would walk around blind
You rescue me from my own mind
My purpose and forgiveness you help me find
With your love, the whole world I could grind

You give me strength and power
You bring me up when I get lower
You give me support, my lover
When you promise me forever

I’m glad we were able to fix things
I’m glad we learned to enjoy the good life brings
Instead of suffocating, I claimed you my king
You have committed yourself to be my other wing

Don’t leave me, never let me go
I need you just so you know
I’m not strong as I appear to show
I need to be saved by my hero

Remind me you love me and I will do the same
I will tell the whole world if I could with no shame
Nothing can put out this burning flame
For my heart you have claimed
One day, a hand stretched out to me
Like the naive fool I was, I took it
I knew full well that it would hurt
That it was some joke or prank
Just so they can watch me bleed again
Yet I desperately wanted the hope

After that day, he was always there
Studying with me in the classroom
Sitting with me at the lunch table
Playing soccer with me during recess
I was waiting for the sting of a needle
Yet each day went on with no sting

There were changes from that point
I wasn't alone when they attacked
He defended me from them
Or he bleed on the ground with me
He didn't have to do any of this
He was accepted and loved by them

They always made fun of him now
That he was wasting his time with me
The things they said had to hurt
Yet he stood there courageously
Telling them the same thing each time
That he saw a Hero inside of me

My Hero helped me with many things
He showed me how to study better
How to kick the ball properly
A whole world of ideals to pursue
My Hero helped me find who I am
Yet he wanted me to believe in people

We both wanted to prove our worth
Too many told us we were worthless
He had manifested a fruit tree in him
Fruits that would show them the truth
I had manifested a fire instead
One that wanted to make them burn

I think about that day we met still
It's been 14 years since I knew him
I'm struggling as a Junior in college
I'm trying to do what I love to do
I'm working to show them my worth
Yet I still haven't found the truth

There haven't been any hands now
I fought my way here on my own
Yet they still call me worthless
My family, classmates, co-workers...
Not a one wants me around
What am I even fighting for again?

I look back towards that last day
Where I had that fight with him
My Hero acted strangely that day
And for the first time he snapped
And that was when I felt it sting
The needle going through my knee

My fire grew far too large for him
He stood there and watched
As his Hero's fire consumed him
I realize that I never let that tree grow
I guess he was wrong about me
Wrong about that Hero he saw in me
Tony Tweedy May 9
The fourteenth day of May approaches and skies are turning grey.
Forty years it will be since the cancer took you away.

You never knew your grand-kids or saw me take a wife.
But you taught me how to live and lead a decent kind of life.

The fourteenth day of May will always bring me oh so low.
It will always mark the first step on the lonely life I now know.

I try to push aside dark memories to recall only good times we had.
I think on how I yet miss you, still oh so proud you were my dad.
The first step to the lonely place I now live.
Ordinary Valaam nursing home
For the good and the poor but not for saints.
There are a lot of crowded wards home,
For old people with neither arms nor legs.
Here the nurses can’t keep track of everything—
That’s why there are always  stench and doom here,
Everybody has a look depth carrying
In which is visible renunciation mere.
Here lived the hero of the USSR.
Wounded in battle under Krasnodar.
Like everyone else, a Soviet officer,
Just cynically called “a samovar”.
He was never discouraged for everyone—
He joked of everything and laughed heartily,
He gave useful advices to everyone,
And he only smiled at rudeness daily.
They took  veterans “out for a walk”, they
Attached the veterans to fir trees on sackcloth,
In the evening old men were removed from fir trees , they
Had to sleep. Was  forgotten the hero’s
Life. He didn’t die from multiple wounds,
He died quietly, without a cry or a sigh.
Died here so, having frozen veterans.
Together with them died the epoch, great and high.
{2020}

СМЕРТЬ ГЕРОЯ

Обычный валаамский интернат –
Не для святых, но сирых и убогих.
Здесь много переполненных палат
Для стриков безруких и безногих.
Сиделки тут за всем не уследят –
А потому здесь смрад и обречённость.
У каждого - глубокий очень взгляд,
Видна в котором только отрешённость.
Тут жил один герой СССР ,
Израненный в бою под Краснодаром.
Подобно всем, советский офицер
Цинично назывался «самоваром».
Он никогда для всех не унывал –
Шутил про всё и искренне смеялся.
Советы всем полезные давал.
В ответ на грубость – только улыбался.
Однажды «выводили» всех «гулять» -
На мешковинах к елям прицепили.
И к вечеру с деревьев сняли - спать.
А про героя начисто забыли!
Он умер не от множественных ран,
По-тихому – без крика или вздоха.
Вот так ушёл, замёрзнув, ветеран.
И с ним ушла великая эпоха!
{25.02.2020}

Translator - I. Toporov
Bipasha Dutt May 2
during
trying times, tiring times,
testing times, tormenting times,

a hero is not born
but
a hero is revealed.
Pinanday ka ng panahon
May tapang na hindi
basta sumusuko,
sa lahat ng laban
wala kang inuurungan,

Agimat mo ay katapangan
na umagaw mula sa kalaban.
Buo at tibay ng iyong loob
ano man ang iyong sagupain
walang di kakayanin.

laban mo’y hindi biro
Una kami sa iyong puso
Bago ang iyong pagkatao
Karamay ka, sa bawat
along bumubugso.

Ikaw ang bagong bayani
ng ating lipi na nagbabalik
ng kulay at sigla bitbit
ang bandila na may kisig
at buong katapangan.
Dedicated to all frontliners and to all great leaders.
Gi Apr 26
I’m hiding because

it’s easy to do
To misdirect you
To hide the true me
So that you cannot see

I’m scared
So I prepare
The perfect cover
And hope you don’t discover

What truly hides beneath the veil
That turn people pale

Just because I’m hidden
Doesn’t mean I’ll put down that pen
To write what I feel
To draw a tight seal
Over what I hid
What I hid
Lies in truth amid
But you need to open your eyelid

Help me see
A better day
A day with you and me
Something. It was always something.
And whenever it was nothing
That something came crashing in
Amplifying, magnifying, falsifying

Nothing is ever as hard as living
Nothing was ever as easy as quitting
Surviving was unforgiving
Dying was unremitting

A broken heart and broken bones
Diverging cries that we condone
Death is whispered in unwavering tones
A vacuous home; an empty throne

One lone thing could change the world
For better or worse, all unknown
Transcendence be the killer of all
Be a hero, die alone

A broken heart and broken bones
Diverging cries that we condone
Death is whispered in unwavering tones
A vacuous home; an empty throne

A tattered quest
A broken trail
A sin confessed
All’s bound to fail
A heart of stone to anchor down
A heart of gold, a thieves’ crown
A heart of ice to thaw the beast
An injured heart, long deceased

A broken heart and broken bones
Diverging cries that we condone
Death is whispered in unwavering tones
A vacuous home; an empty throne

A damaged soul, laid to rest
Unforgiving and unremitting
A hero's tale, told at best
Rescript and falsely fitting
Songstress
by Michael R. Burch

for Nadia Anjuman

Within its starkwhite ribcage, how the heart
must flutter wildly, O, and always sing
against the pressing darkness: all it knows
until at last it feels the numbing sting
of death. Then life’s brief vision swiftly passes,
imposing night on one who clearly saw.

Death held your bright heart tightly, till its maw—
envenomed, fanged—could swallow, whole, your Awe.

And yet it was not death so much as you
who sealed your doom; you could not help but sing
and not be silenced. Here, behold your tomb’s
white alabaster cage: pale, wretched thing!

But you’ll not be imprisoned here, wise wren!
Your words soar free; rise, sing, fly, live again

Keywords/Tags: Nadia Anjuman, Afghanistan, Afghani poet, poetess, death, martyr, hero, heroine, voice, freedom, equality, justice
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