killing a writer is easy

Anna Politkovskaya, RIP

Our criminal time has materialized itself in a vast hitman’s hand that slaps us and slaps us and slaps us. And we – we are still asleep. We’ll die asleep.

This news simply makes me sick.

From Mandelstam’s Tristia

The asphodel’s transparent
grey spring is a long way off.
Sand is rustling, really
the waves are breaking white.
But here, like Persephone, my soul
enters the sphere of no-weight
and there are no beautiful tanned
arms in the kingdom of the dead.

Why trust a boat
with a funeral urn’s weight,
and why make holidays of black roses
over amethyst water? My soul pulls there,
past Meganom’s misty cape,
where the black sail will come
from, after the funeral!
Quick black clouds run by unlit,
and under this windy moon
flocks of black roses go flying.
And, behind the cypress-stern
the bird of death and mourning-tears
drags itself,
a huge flag of memory.

And the fan of buried years
opens, rustling, toward the amulet,
where once, with a dark shuddering
it buried itself in the sand:
my soul pulls there
past Meganom’s misty cape
where the black sail will sail
from, after the funeral!


Amie said…
LI, thanks for mentioning this. i wonder if many in the land of the free felt sick or a spasm or sting of pain hearing of this. or if it just led to a knee-jerk and self-righteous reaction of well this might happen in russia but we...
have passed a lovely law legalizing torture, and have a system inexorably reducing anyone who really questions the insane powers that be to pretty much being a beggar on a street corner with a paper cup for pennies though hey the cup might have 'i love nyc' written on it or a depiction of the acropolis...

the mandelstam poem is so just. i'm reminded of another line of his, that i can only quote from memory and without knowing the original language.

"Yes, I am lying in the ground but my lips are moving."

it's up to us to listen, no?
new york pervert said…
i've actually been surprised through the years that some writers have not been imprisoned in the U.S. There has been a lot of recent talk about suppressing journalists and they have been, haven't they? I think I read a few months back about specific legal threats planned for journalists. Obviously I'm not talking about stooges like ms. Miller. There have been conspicuous firings at newspapers like the LATimes and previously 'alternative' papers like the Village Voice seem to have been transformed in a period of a couple of years. This no longer surprises me.