Sunday, July 29, 2012

I Would Like

I would like

to be born

in every country,

have a passport

for them all

to throw

all foreign offices

into panic,

be every fish

in every ocean

and every dog

in the streets of the world.

I don’t want to bow down

before any idols

or play at being

a Russian Orthodox church hippie,

but I would like to plunge

deep into Lake Baikal

and surface snorting


why not in the Mississippi?

In my damned beloved universe

I would like

to be a lonely weed,

but not a delicate Narcissus

kissing his own mug

in the mirror.

I would like to be

any of God’s creatures

right down to the last mangy hyena--

but never a tyrant

or even the cat of a tyrant.

I would like to be

reincarnated as a man

in any image:

a victim of prison tortures,

a homeless child in the slums of Hong Kong,

a living skeleton in Bangladesh,

a holy beggar in Tibet,

a black in Cape Town,

but never

in the image of Rambo.

The only people whom I hate

are the hypocrites--

pickled hyenas

in heavy syrup.

I would like to lie

under the knives of all the surgeons in the world,

be hunchbacked, blind,

suffer all kinds of diseases,

wounds and scars,

be a victim of war,

or a sweeper of cigarette butts,

just so a filthy microbe of superiority

doesn’t creep inside.

I would not like to be in the elite,

nor, of course,

in the cowardly herd,

nor be a guard dog of that herd,

nor a shepherd,

sheltered by that herd.

And I would like happiness,

but not at the expense of the unhappy,

and I would like freedom,

but not at the expense of the unfree.

I would like to love

all the women in the world,

and I would like to be a woman, too--

just once...

Men have been diminished

by Mother Nature.

Why couldn’t we give motherhood

to men?

If an innocent child


below his heart,

man would probably

not be so cruel.

I would like to be man’s daily bread--


a cup of rice

for a Vietnamese woman in mourning,

cheap wine

in a Neapolitan workers’ trattoria,

or a tiny tube of cheese

in orbit round the moon.

Let them eat me,

let them drink me,

only let my death

be of some use.

I would like to belong to all times,

shock all history so much

that it would be amazed

what a smart aleck I was.

I would like to bring Nefertiti

to Pushkin in a troika.

I would like to increase

the space of a moment

a hundredfold,

so that in the same moment

I could drink vodka with fishermen in Siberia

and sit together with Homer,



and Tolstoy,

drinking anything,

except, of course,


--dance to the tom-toms in the Congo,

--strike at Renault,

--chase a ball with Brazilian boys

at Copacabana Beach.

I would like to know every language,

like the secret waters under the earth,

and do all kinds of work at once.

I would make sure

that one Yevtushenko was merely a poet,

the second--an underground fighter


I couldn’t say where

for security reasons,

the third--a student at Berkeley,

the fourth--a jolly Georgian drinker,

and the fifth--

maybe a teacher of Eskimo children in Alaska,

the sixth--

a young president,

somewhere, say, modestly speaking, in Sierra Leone,

the seventh--

would still be shaking a rattle in his stroller,

and the tenth...

the hundredth...

the millionth...

For me it’s not enough to be myself,

let me be everyone!

Every creature

usually has a double,

but God was stingy

with the carbon paper,

and in his Paradise Publishing Corporation

made a unique copy of me.

But I shall muddle up

all God’s cards--

I shall confound God!

I shall be in a thousand copies to the end of my days,

so that the earth buzzes with me,

and computers go berserk

in the world census of me.

I would like to fight on all your barricades,


dying each night

like an exhausted moon,

and resurrecting each morning

like a newborn sun,

with an immortal soft spot--fontanel--

on my head.

And when I die,

a smart-aleck Siberian Francois Villon,

do not lay me in the earth

of France

or Italy,

but in our Russian, Siberian earth,

on a still-green hill,

where I first felt

that I was


Composed and translated from the original Russian
by Yevgeny Yevtushenko
Loved above all other poems
by Homeless with a Laptop, That is my Name
This is the one poem that is written in my heart and I wished to write, but Yevgeny wrote it first and more beautifully than I could ever possibly hope to do.  Only a Russian could write such a poem ...

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Clock of the Years

Every man
is his own clock
  Tic toc
he may rise
by the sun
and go to sleep
with the stars
  Tic toc
but if he
take stock
and come to knock
at fate’s door
he may find
that he himself
has sprung the lock
against himself.

to knock
now, the door
will not open—
save only
at the shock
of love,
to deliver him
from that block,
his heart and
set it beating again:
Tic toc
Tic toc
tic toc!

By:  William Carlos Williams
tic toc tic toc by:  Homeless with a Laptop, That is my Name

Friday, July 6, 2012

Your Hand

When I first held your hand
I became complete
The world no longer looked
At me alone;
You were with me
Two young lovers,
Holding hands
As young lovers have
Done over time
Looking at the world
Through new found sights
That only hearts can see

I miss the feel of your
Hand in mine
I miss the flow of
Energy between
Our hands;
Stronger than any
Nuclear reactor;
And capable of setting
My heart aglow
Even over time
long past

I’ve chased your memory
In my dreams;
I still keep love
Notes I wrote to you
long ago; or what
others say is long ago;
to me it is yesterday

I smile at thoughts
of you
When I first held your hand.

By:  Homeless with a Laptop, That is my Name

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

The free bird leaps
on the back of the wind
and floats downstream
till the current ends
and dips his wings
in the orange sun rays
and dares to claim the sky.

But a bird that stalks
down his narrow cage
can seldom see through
his bars of rage
his wings are clipped and
his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings
with fearful trill
of the things unknown
but longed for still
and its tune is heard
on the distant hill for the caged bird
sings of freedom

The free bird thinks of another breeze
and the trade winds soft through the sighing trees
and the fat worms waiting on a dawn-bright lawn
and he names the sky his own.

But a caged bird stands on the grave of dreams
his shadow shouts on a nightmare scream
his wings are clipped and his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing

The caged bird sings
with a fearful trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom.

By:  Maya Angelou
Copied, pasted and loved by:  Homeless with a Laptop, That is my Name