Aigerim Tazhi, born in 1981 in the western Kazakhstani city of Aktobe, is an award-winning poet writing in Russian. She has published one collection of poetry, “BOG-O-SLOV” (or THEO-LOG-IAN in English, although it could also be read as GOD O’ WORDS). Her work has been translated into English, French, Polish, Kazakh, Uzbek, and Armenian, and published in prominent literary magazines. She lives in Almaty.
The poems below are part of the collection Paper-Thin Skin, translated into English by J. Kates and published by Zephyr Press.
… and somewhere everyday life turned into a miracle
a dragonfly summer stock still
grows waterlilies in a shrinking pond
though i don’t need to, i’m going there
beyond the arch of interlaced trees
a forgotten house unhealthy and chill
accidentally preserved the familiar colour
i look at: was the blind swinging? no
and the sun throws lavish glares
marking out the brokenness of space
with charcoal and chalk on an empty table
the light leafs through the outlines
a jug with a broken spout, hearts
of flowers pinned on their stalks
the same teddy bear still lies
or that’s not it on the dusty piano
from over there i cannot see for sure
There is a certain rhythm in anxiety.
One, and two, and three, and silence.
One, and two, and three. I look out the window.
The night is far too dark for March.
And across the way, in a house past the courtyard,
they have not yet fallen asleep,
they keep watch over the tableware
in the dim light. In a warm circle?
A thin woman carries
a cake binoculars distort.