In Another World (To Texas and Beyond/Projection)
by Elina Petrova



To Texas And Beyond

She laid down between the rails
watching the vast train
whistle by – high above –
overloaded with cargo:
a clash of compartments, fumes
from the firebox of its sepia predecessor,
Ry Cooder’s blues
with a knife pressed on the string,
the smell of fodder.
She got on that train:
a time traveler, peering
into swishing prairies,
the Tahoe-blue eyes of smudgy
short-tempered settlers
not yet sleekened into plankton
in district courts.
She believed in self-defense.
She believed in silence,
horse whispering, shingles
of southbound nomads
more than in justice –
gore at the sheepfold,
dusted with snow
labor camp landfills
of her forefathers.


Projection

In the other world
her touch is a gentle surf –
a warm splash of hands.
Her laughter
chimes without cracking.
Under her eyelids
the lime-green sun
pulses its dilated pupil.
The morning
smells like a rain-washed apple,
her infant’s skin,
cheek-to-cheek
after the war-long parting.
In the other world
she remembers
why she awakes.





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