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The small museum does not close at six, and now
we, homeless vagabonds, watch our December:
Vorokhta enveloped in snow and strangers
gesticulating by the entrance of the club,
and carrying musical equipment, cameras, and light
goes out so rapidly on us. Carpathians
head off past language, trampling the snow
pink, dusky, prickly, like the pine needles.

Antonioni, Pasolini and Fellini
are sitting on the steps and smoking cigarettes;
as always, something’s missing, but just what –
is indeterminable; worn out assistants
signal that it is necessary to wait
before we finish; so you crumple
your notes, approach the microphone, step over wires,
small Hutsuls with lit candles overtake you
and ask you, how long will the Death take.

How long death will take…
How do I know?
The bloody tissues freeze up in the darkness,
and mountains fall under the cover of muteness,
and trails are covered up by snow in the wintertime,

in which there is neither Martha, nor Maria,
just darkness, a ballet of bats, this state
of the inevitable Vorokhta that has trapped
the homeless hounds on the peaks of Hutsulia.

translated by oksana maksymchuk

the original poem