05 July 2016

Tuesday Poem: Messages, by Polina Kouzminova

Happiness is a big city.
Taxi cab rush, whisks of hair.
Polka dots of rain on the windows,
clearing under the heat wave of shimmering sun.
Street signs weave stories.
I’m more than my usual self – home abandoned
for a small heated teacup on a street I thought I knew,
felt comfortable living in it…art in museums
screams so loud with reproductions of nudes,
but this isn’t Paris, and the years are not the same.

There’s a bus full of people, and it’s heading my way.
Soon, I’ll be gone, having captured that bit of happiness -
from a stranger, some sight my eye followed,
an emotion getting larger and larger under the heat
of the day. But this is not a remedy. It never was.

All year from November until the next, – trying to weave stories
out of starts and exits, as if Alice in a modern wonderland;
that purple cocktail did the trick, for a bit –

forgotten waves
lay at rest, at peace, but not in silence.

Shells to my ears,
murmur of something, some message being scribbled at night
inside my head.
All through the day – unravelling, but never really discovering,
until my eyes turned to the Coast. I sort of stumbled, – I am…
I’m in you, whenever nature breathes fairy tales.

To watch the grass grow, feel the wave
tumbling and twisting, a sense of being together at once,
in that initial moment, – if just for a bit.

Credit note: "Messages" by Polina Kouzminova, is included in the "Poetry Gees" anthology edited by Mark Pirie and published in conjunction with the Poetry Gees Winter Reading on 17 July. It is reproduced here by the permission of the author and the publisher.

Tim says: I like the sense of dislocation, and relocation, in this poem. I've only just discovered Polina's poetry, but based on the little I have read so far, I am keen to read and hear more of her work.

Author bio: Born in Siberia and raised in New Zealand from the age of ten, Polina Kouzminova weaves the threads of both cultures into poetry. These are poems of snow and water, and just as water reflects, her poems echo not only each other, but also her own reflections on the lover who leaves, the family left behind and the universe that is waiting for her. Polina’s world shimmers with snowflakes, glaciers and condensation on glass, and there is always a sense of missing. She writes: ‘These are the reasons to leave late nights and fly back home’.

Polina's first collection an echo where you lie is published by and available from Mākaro Press.


Penelope said...

There are indeed a great many shifts of perspective and tone in quite a short poem.

Tim Jones said...

Yes - I enjoyed that!