Anton Yakovlev


and at this point how strange to see them
the dry flowers of a passé national crisis

the stone balloons of nostalgia
no skins recall the stabbing

still there is comfort in those zombies
the faded names the used-to-be tears

the dog stops attacking
the violence lingers

the sunset is slow to fade
walking sticks grow into cages

who called them brilliant for dying
what would they have gotten for enduring

the tunnel angled ever upward
no one dug up the remains

Anton Yakovlev’s latest poetry chapbook Chronos Dines Alone (SurVision Books, 2018) won the James Tate Poetry Prize. The Last Poet of the Village, a book of translations of selected poems by Sergei Yesenin, was published in 2019 by Sensitive Skin Books. Yakovlev’s poems have appeared in The New Yorker, The New Criterion, The Hopkins Review, Measure, Posit, and elsewhere.

Next poem

Previous poem