Spring 2011, Volume 10

Poetry by Andrey Gritsman

Unsheltering Sky

It was hard to believe:
Life’s outgrown the legend,
time has eclipsed,
space has come to an end,
Gibraltar turned Atlantis,
wind and a desert merged
into one sky.

Coffee cup, and oriental rug,
mint tea sippers on the dusty veranda,
watching the quarterfinals
on the black and white
TV through suffocating
cigarette smoke,
dirty green waves on the horizon
reading Homer.

Snapshots, colored
fragments of commonplace
that will disappear
in someone’s chest.
He was a landscape himself,
shadow crossed Central Park,
leaving trace in the snow,
in the sand.

Lonely traveler, his death
became new language,
poetry turned
into a palpable matter,
breathable air itself.



BIO: A native of Moscow, Andrey Gritsman emigrated to the United States in 1981. He is a physician who is also a poet and essayist. He has published five volumes of poetry in Russian, has received the 2009 Pushcart Prize Honorable Mention XXIII and was nominated for the Pushcart Prize several times 2005 – 2008, and also was on the Short List for PEN American Center Biennial Osterweil Poetry Award. His poems, essays, and short stories in English have appeared or are forthcoming in over 60 literary journals, including Left Curve, Nimrod International Journal, Sanskrit, Blue Mesa, Cadillac Cicatrix, Confrontation, Cimarron Review, Euphony, Absinthe: New European Writing, Hiram Poetry Review, Hotel Amerika, New Orleans Review, New Zoo Poetry Review, Notre Dame Review, Wisconsin Review, Carquinez Poetry Review, Denver Quarterly, Epicenter, Hawaii Review, Hunger Mountain, The Hurricane Review, Permafrost, Phantasmagoria, Poet Lore, Poetry International, Post Road, Puerto del Sol, Reed Magazine, Richmond Review (London), Fortnight (N. Ireland, UK), Landfall (New Zealand), Ars Interpres (Stockholm, Sweden), The South Carolina Review, The Spoon River Poetry Review, Tampa Review, Token Entry, Upstreet, and The Writer's Chronicle. Her work has also been anthologized in Modern Poetry in Translation (UK), Crossing Centuries (New Generation in Russian Poetry), The Breath of Parted Lips: Voices from the Robert Frost Place, and in Stranger at Home: American Poetry with an Accent.

He received his MFA in poetry from Vermont College. He runs the Intercultural Poetry Series in a popular literary club, Cornelia Street Café, in New York City and edits an international bilingual online poetry magazine, www.interpoezia.net.