Sonnets to my Rodina

Image: ‘Protests in Belarus’ © Ang Bob.

Author: Nadia K. Bauer

I.
Когда увижу я —
The silver portal that you lock every night
With the same rusty nail
Olga laughing and you rolling your eyes
Когда почувствую я —
The humid moist the tall pinewoods
CAST alongside their shadows — on the little dachas
The smell of yellowed newspapers burning in the pechka
Will I ever UNsee —
The marks of JAIL on his smudged face
Her mother’s disappearance
The firebombs they threw just across the street,
Will I ever — on the earth of my liberated Rodina —
STAND again.

II.
Hold me —
Rodina moya
Give me SILU to watch you derive from under my feet.
Do not let go of your endless plains and of your
clear birch groves — of your teethless babushkas
who will keep — selling the same juicy blueberries
by the roadside — until I can embrace you again.
Let the shadows of the gaol bars slowly wash off his face.
Give her the strength to walk on our lines without me
— give her the strength to walk. Дай им more years —
rock them until I can take them in my arms from you.
To me, give надежду to believe
That I will feel my bare feet on your
WET and FREE earth again.

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