Trafika Europe 13 - Russian Ballet

Two Stories

Katya, and the fortunate madman, Schneiderman. With the approach of night, the cicadas raised a piercing racket. One of the guests, in a subdued voice, as though speaking to himself, began reciting Mandelstam: A trickle of golden honey flowed from the bottle, So viscous and long the hostess had time to utter, “Here, in sad Taurica, where fate has brought us, We never pine for long,” glancing over her shoulder.... In the room, white as a spinning wheel, silence held sway. It smells of vinegar, paint, and newly-fermented wine. Do you remember, in that Greek home: the beloved wife, Not Helen – the other – how long she sewed and sewed…. “Why the other?” Schneiderman abruptly asked with apparent bitterness. “Why the other?” At the beginning of winter, Katya called Lina in Moscow to tell her that, outside of Feodosia, on a deserted stretch of highway, Gena was hit by a heavy-duty dump truck loaded with ballast stone, fatally. I didn’t see Schneiderman in his coffin. And I am only able to imagine, how after another alcohol-fueled, strong- spirited night he lies, sleeping it off on a morning beach, and a bird alights on his shoulder, as on an untrammeled bush – effortlessly and fearlessly. _____


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