shot glass
"... brevity is the soul of wit ..."
- William Shakespeare


Anatoly Kudryavitsky lives in Dublin, Ireland, and in Reggio di Calabria, Italy. His poems appear in Oxford Poetry, Poetry Ireland Review, The North, The Prague Revue, Plume, BlazeVox, The Honest Ulsterman, Cyphers, Stride, etc. His most recent poetry collections are The Two-Headed Man and the Paper Life (MadHat Press, USA, 2019) and Scultura Involontaria (Multimedia Edizione, Italy, 2020; a bilingual English/Italian edition of his selected poems). His new collection, Sky Sailing, is due from Salmon Poetry in 2022. His latest novel, The Flying Dutchman, has been brought out by Glagoslav Publications, England, in 2018. In 2020, he won an English PEN Translate Award for his anthology of Russian dissident poetry 1960-1980 entitled Accursed Poets (Smokestack Books, 2020). He is the editor of SurVision poetry magazine.

Anatoly Kudryavitsky

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You Know Something Isn't Right

when you see reeds at the edge of a song,
or the staccato of a surveillance saccade,
a man followed by a watchdog,
the police with zip-gun heads,
criminals who embryo each other,
people buried under hate slabs,
a black hole staring at you
with its blue parliamentary eyes.

The predicament is predatory; it
expands its scope.
All the cats of Kotor yodel in ecstasy
amid blood-coloured serenity.
You begin to suspect that something
isn't right, and then,
one binocular morning,
you just KNOW IT.