Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Andriy Bondar

the men of my country

the men of my country
give up their seats on the subway
to the handicapped the aged
and to the passengers with children
but mostly they go on sitting
since these categories of citizens
have a pronounced tendency to die out
or travel by subway less and less often

the men of my country
they are saints under a heel
with trained insect jaws
with which they gnaw their way
to deserved fatherhood
and later having untied their hands
savor children’s flesh
using proscribed methods
of raising the younger generation

the men of my country
are not mutants or perverts
they are products of secondary processing
of amino acids
this is all that remains of the nation
which loves and honors its heroes
youths so roly-poly or with pit bull jaws
their love for motherhood
has outgrown all discernible limits
and became a signature style

the men of my country
wonderful specimens for an entomologist
for they are fragile like exotic butterflies
pinned to a piece of cardboard
they acknowledge the value
of every move every sound
for life is an unending crime
that has no justification

the men of my country
blow their noses simply into their hands
for the hand is the most useful organ
for such an important deed
they usually don’t have any other
important deeds to consider

the men of my country
make no effort
efforts ruin the liver
and their mouths smell bad
and have they really been born
to exert efforts

the men of my country
prematurely descend into the grave
and become weightless angels
an ideal raw material
for metaphysical speculations
a superfluous argument in favor of the existence
of god or what’s his name

THE MEN OF MY COUNTRY

Close

the men of my country

the men of my country
give up their seats on the subway
to the handicapped the aged
and to the passengers with children
but mostly they go on sitting
since these categories of citizens
have a pronounced tendency to die out
or travel by subway less and less often

the men of my country
they are saints under a heel
with trained insect jaws
with which they gnaw their way
to deserved fatherhood
and later having untied their hands
savor children’s flesh
using proscribed methods
of raising the younger generation

the men of my country
are not mutants or perverts
they are products of secondary processing
of amino acids
this is all that remains of the nation
which loves and honors its heroes
youths so roly-poly or with pit bull jaws
their love for motherhood
has outgrown all discernible limits
and became a signature style

the men of my country
wonderful specimens for an entomologist
for they are fragile like exotic butterflies
pinned to a piece of cardboard
they acknowledge the value
of every move every sound
for life is an unending crime
that has no justification

the men of my country
blow their noses simply into their hands
for the hand is the most useful organ
for such an important deed
they usually don’t have any other
important deeds to consider

the men of my country
make no effort
efforts ruin the liver
and their mouths smell bad
and have they really been born
to exert efforts

the men of my country
prematurely descend into the grave
and become weightless angels
an ideal raw material
for metaphysical speculations
a superfluous argument in favor of the existence
of god or what’s his name

the men of my country

the men of my country
give up their seats on the subway
to the handicapped the aged
and to the passengers with children
but mostly they go on sitting
since these categories of citizens
have a pronounced tendency to die out
or travel by subway less and less often

the men of my country
they are saints under a heel
with trained insect jaws
with which they gnaw their way
to deserved fatherhood
and later having untied their hands
savor children’s flesh
using proscribed methods
of raising the younger generation

the men of my country
are not mutants or perverts
they are products of secondary processing
of amino acids
this is all that remains of the nation
which loves and honors its heroes
youths so roly-poly or with pit bull jaws
their love for motherhood
has outgrown all discernible limits
and became a signature style

the men of my country
wonderful specimens for an entomologist
for they are fragile like exotic butterflies
pinned to a piece of cardboard
they acknowledge the value
of every move every sound
for life is an unending crime
that has no justification

the men of my country
blow their noses simply into their hands
for the hand is the most useful organ
for such an important deed
they usually don’t have any other
important deeds to consider

the men of my country
make no effort
efforts ruin the liver
and their mouths smell bad
and have they really been born
to exert efforts

the men of my country
prematurely descend into the grave
and become weightless angels
an ideal raw material
for metaphysical speculations
a superfluous argument in favor of the existence
of god or what’s his name
Sponsors
Gemeente Rotterdam
Nederlands Letterenfonds
Stichting Van Beuningen Peterich-fonds
Ludo Pieters Gastschrijver Fonds
Hendrik Muller fonds
Lira fonds
J.E. Jurriaanse
Literature Translation Institute of Korea
Partners
LantarenVenster – Verhalenhuis Belvédère