Sunday, September 13, 2015

The Big Book Of Russian Haiku

The Big Book Of Russian Haiku is missing from its shelf
in the Chrysanthemum Room of the Glorious Proletariats' Library.

Five librarians,
each of them an opium dream of precisely measured sensuality,
and all of them wearing dark-framed eyeglasses and 
spit-shined riding boots,

Persuade me to wait exactly seven minutes while they submit
my request to the appropriate bureaus.
There is a carp pond
and a jar of startlingly blue ink pens.

If they can locate The Big Book Of Russian Haiku for me,
I can hold it like a discus,
and break the jaw of my old professor with it;
he betrayed the revolution
by watching baseball and taking up Buddhism. 

My time in the Chrysanthemum Room is nearly done,
and I can hear ten unstoppable leather boots approaching down the hall.
They tell me the book is gone
lost to the Russian winter,
and besides, what use anyway, to have it?

Then they invite me to share their samovar,
samizdat, 
and sable fur they favor
for reading Pushkin by candlelight with library patrons
taken--one at a time--into their confidence.
________ 

For copyright reasons, I can't include the image that inspired me, but you can view it HERE.

 

14 comments:

Cloudia said...

"Persuade me to wait. . .
There is a carp pond
and a jar of startlingly blue ink pens."

Excellent real, small moment, that impresses with its verisimilitude.




ALOHA
ComfortSpiral
=^..^=

banana rama said...

Being a seriously committed library girl, I found this complete bliss to read. I loved and savored every word and will be thrilled to read it again and again.

Although, I don't recall EVER seeing a sexy librarian. :)

Excellent line breaks/pauses throughout. These are my favorite lines/sections:

"each of them an opium dream of precisely measured sensuality"

"Persuade me to wait exactly seven minutes while they submit"

"There is a carp pond
and a jar of startlingly blue ink pens."

"I can hear ten unstoppable leather boots approaching"

"They tell me the book is gone
lost to the Russian winter"

the last stanza

hedgewitch said...

Yes, well, since you wrote this, I'm sure you know which lines are the ones that are especially well-crafted, so I will merely say, the mood and atmosphere in this are perfect--everything becomes a visual, a cinematic, and I see rows of shelves, high-vaulted ceilings and incessant snow falling outside the window by which the tea things rest on a beautiful table with arched legs. A gorgeous, rich, and very funny poem.

Other Mary said...

Oh so cleverly
written, the Russian haiku
Book poem. Bravo!

Sherry Blue Sky said...

I couldnt click over fast enough when I saw the words Shay and haiku in the same sentence... Love this.......I am never averse to stopping by a Russian library, in my armchair traveling.........their harsh winters make me feel better about my life, LOL.

Sioux said...

Shay--The poem was a rollicking delight, and the labels were almost as fun. Perhaps on your next birthday we should all shower you with haikus?

brudberg said...

This is like something that Mikhail Bulgakov could have written... :-) Whenever you mention haiku I know you do it for a reason.

Lynn said...

Reads like a dream!

Kerry O'Connor said...

What an enthralling poem, Shay. magnificent in its breadth and satirical wit. I so enjoyed the read.

If they can locate The Big Book Of Russian Haiku for me,
I can hold it like a discus,
and break the jaw of my old professor with it;
he betrayed the revolution...

Priceless!!

Daryl said...

i am loving the autumn leaves and the feelings you've infused ...

Sara said...

It never ceases to amaze me how you take almost any topic and make it into a poem story. Don't laugh at me, but there's almost a James Bond (ish) take to this one:~) It made me smile:~)

Ileana said...

Sophisticated and so polished. Your writing is always an escape to faraway lands.

Mama Zen said...

I just needed this.

Ella said...

Shay, I have missed your magic and mayhem~ I want a jar of startlingly blue ink pens~ Your poems have a dream-like quality, which I love~