Archives For Brothers Karamazov

Kolya Krasotkin Wept

“. . . when the children guitared
At my footbed,
Kolya Krosotkins
of my railroad”i

Kolya Krasotkin, that little son of a provincial secretaryii
Studied the trains
And for two roubles
Flattened himself on the railroad tracks face down
And let the eleven o’clock train pass over him (without touching his small body)
He fainted (confessed only to Mama) and turned white as snow
On that black moonless Russian night
Forever a hero to the other schoolboys
Desperado in rank
For his mad wild pranks
Ilyusha’s papa’s red beard
Dragged from tavern to square
On that terrible whiskbroom day
The sickly boy’s spirit rose
Defending poor Papa
Stones hurled and flew
Alyosha struck and bitten, too
Met the captain, sir, much ado
Shaggy Perezvon renamed
One-eyed tricks, gray Zhuchka dog stay
The boy’s mind tick, tock, ticks
The goosey goose cracked . . . in the peasant market place
A clever boy, intelligent, big-shot brave boy
Fourteen years old (in two weeks)
A socialist and atheist, too
A reader of Voltaire and books
Onegin knows he
Mathematics and world history
Old man, you see,
I’ve come to love thee
And visit your deathbed
Icons, cannon smoke
Karamazov spoke at the stone
The children raised up the little coffin
Bringing bread for the sparrows
So he lay not alone Flowers
Candles
Farewell sad little boots
All the boys cried
Kolya wept
If we could resurrect our boy
Grief . . . and pancakes

i Kerouac, Jack. Mexico City Blues, 55th
Chorus. (New York: Grove Press, 1994). p. 55.
ii Dostoevsky, Fyodor. The Brothers Karamazov. (New York: Vintage Classics, 1991).

Preakness Springs Young Writer’s Dreams

Preakness springs young writer’s dreams
Castles soar in fresh bright air
Precious Underwood close at hand
And typewriter of thy heart . . . ‘tis furious poet’s tool
Notebooks filled with million words
American stories colored told
Baseball, football, scored by jazz
Seaman’s tales and merchant sails
Spontaneous flow of poetry prose
Languagey language i casual pen
Talent, energy, ambition swell
Leads to Manhattan lights and nights
And its clubs and rain streaked streets
Paves way sad gray Lowell leave
Away New England’s frozen freeze
Thoreau’s pond and pine tree breeze
Wolfe, Melville, Dostoevsky saint
London, Whitman, Shakespeare’s plaint
To his own voice be true
That rises above the mills
And smoke, knowing
There’s nothing like a cigar
For a clean young man from a clean home ii
With a credo
To write all day
And star-spangled night
Of course, there’s a sublime woman iii
A great woman
And a love to cling to

i Kerouac, Jack. Atop an Underwood: Early Stories and Other Writings. Ed. Paul Marion. (New York: Viking, 1999). pp. 150-151.
ii Ibid., p. 165.
iii Ibid., p. 149.