I scrub and lather him like a salmon until he spits soapy water. "Pig" I smile— This man smells better than his country I throw his shoes and glasses in the air, take off his t-shirt and socks, and kneel in honor of Sasha Petrov who was amputated, in honor of Lesha Vatkii the taken. I dip a glass in a bath-tub, drink dirty water. Soaping together—that is sacred to me. Washing mouths together. You can fuck anyone—but with whom can you sit in water? And the cuddling up before sleep!—and back-scratching in the morning. My back, not yours! I knew I had caught the fish and he knew he had been caught. He sings as I dry his chest & penis "Sonya, I was a glad man with you—"
What We Cannot Hear
They shove Sonya into the army jeep
one morning, one morning, one morning in May, one dime-bright morning—
they shove her
and she zigzags and turns and trips in silence
which is a soul’s noise.
Sonya, who once said, On the day of my arrest I will be playing piano.
We watch four men
and we think we see hundreds of old pianos forming a bridge
from Arlemovsk to Tedna Street, and she
waits at each piano—
and what remains of her is
that speaks with its fingers,
what remains of a puppet is this woman, what remains
of her (they took you, Sonya)—the voice we cannot hear—is the clearest voice.