I received a poem a couple of days ago from my friend Danusha Goska, and I thought I would share it with you. I've also asked her to send a photo from her time in Poland and a brief piece about the origin of the poem.
I lived in Krakow, 1988-89. Communism's blackened, necrotic carcass was blotting out the sun. Solar scientists can confirm this: there was less available light in Poland, 1939-1989. Daily life was a Kafka text. Riots provided the edgy outlet of a cocaine jag. Against all odds, I fell in love with a Polish man. It wasn't happy. I took a train north. I got off at Gdansk and began to walk. I walked beyond the edge of the city. I walked through ploughed fields. Polish spring smacked me in the face.
It's Hard to Believe
It's hard –
striding full the scratch
of eager underbrush,
pregnant smells: alfalfa, earth fresh cut,
the ting and bang and thump and squeal of fields of lapwings,
yellow squares, quilted, tight, of rape,
bruise-blue ripening rye,
and sturdy chestnut colts: shoulders & rumps & thighs
shiny as chrome,
and tattered path-side tapestries
of Queen Anne's lace
and fallow fields scattered
as skies where you don't yet know the constellations
to believe –
to know, yes, I know –
but to really believe
that you won't be coming
back into my life again.
The photo of Danusha was taken the roof of Dom Studencki Piast in Krakow, Poland.
She is the author of Bieganski: The Brute Polak Stereotype in Polish-Jewish Relations and American Popular Culture and the novel Love Me More: An Addict's Diary.
She blogs at Bieganski the Blog.