Vasilisk Gnedov — Death to Art

Translated by Volodymyr Bilyk.

Translator’s Note:
Before you read these poems you must understand the trick behind them. They were written in Russian but with Ukrainian words. And from the Ukrainian point of view — it’s not exactly futurist poetry by any means. It’s more like symbolist pastoral poetry. In a vein of Chuprynka.
But because those words are alien in Russian — it frothes that mystical vibe for which the cycle is much undeservedly admired.
The following translation omits the inadequate playfulness because of supposedy alien-words. Instead it shows the real picture behind them.

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Poem 1

STONGUE

wormwood hides — dust of soul.

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Poem 2

GOATMEAN

Tambourine bells diamonds ass left — lilac. Hides beside the Sun.

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Poem 3

pipewrap

Broken — colloquial…lichen — shepherd of sound.

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Poem 4

he of the mountains

Idea — sings. Ask wide Forgiveness.

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Poem 5

OBSCURITY

I’ll understand — I’ll catch — take Soul.

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Poem 6

Shyroll

Catfish! — and — you — don’t. Pussyfish! — and — fawn — before.

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Poem 7

TARFOIL (TARFOILING)

Mean curls — cunning morals

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Poem 8

Banglit

Silver linings — yoke-notion. Brows

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Poem 9

GAL WOE

Boo-bah. Boo-bah. Boo-bah.

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Poem 10

WHAT

Near endlessness.

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Poem 11

SINGALONG

OOH -

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Poem 12

Yesterday comes

Brother of mine is 8 years old. — Lil’ Pete.

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Poem 13

Tortu.

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Poem 14

U.

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Poem of the End (Poem 15)

(vast free space intended, Vladimir Pyast wrote that Gnedow only made one hand gesture, not saying a word — “there were no words — only one hand gesture — before the hairline with a rapid bow down and shift on the right side. something like a hook was that poem”)

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