By Aleksandr Anashevich

Translated by Vitaly Chernetsky

from Issue 10: Parties


 

 

I can do it right here, it’s simple: cock period, cock period, cock period
—E. Kh. (?) O.D.

girls dreamt: if only cocks could fly like birds

lyubochka says: I don’t like big cocks, they hurt

sveta says: I’d never take a cock in my mouth, and if I did, I’d throw up

lena says: I have never seen a cock, a live one that is, only in movies and magazines

ira says: cocks smell weird

nastya says: I’d like to have a cock so that I could pee standing up

marina says: it was my mom who first told me about cocks so that I’d know what they are and not be afraid

tanya says: my friend has an interesting cock, it is crooked, I like it like that, I can’t imagine a straight cock, a cock must be crooked

lida said: go fuck yourselves with your own cock, own cock
                                                             own cock
                                                             own cock

(it was summer, the high school graduation prom, boys were pissing into the water from the boat deck, just a few minutes before the sunrise)

lyubochka says: all men have cocks, even the resident has one

galya says: I have an artificial cock, I bought it for a hundred rubles at a store

lida says: I sucked a cock once, once one time, once a second time, once another time

ira says: I’ve sucked cock

lida says: you haven’t, because no one would give it to you

(on vasilievsky island there lived an old woman, she had a clock à la louis XIV. she was proud of this clock but was afraid someone would steal, come, kill, take everything away. she wrote to her nephew: take the clock. then the nephew came. she says: no, I won’t give it to you just yet. this happened several times, then she apparently got sick, and wrote for the last time: vanya, my beloved nephew, come, and he sent her a note: go fuck yourself. military men, you know, they are without ceremonies, tell the truth point-blank.)

misha loved his cock

misha washed his cock

igor thinks: strange, why does my cock hurt

igor says: some bug stuck to my cock, at first it was like a pimple, small, red, and then the entire cock swelled

oleg says: his cock, basically, was always hard, there is such a disease, and doctors couldn’t do anything about it, and one doctor tells him: I can’t prescribe you anything, I can only envy you

andrei says: I was working on an ambulance team then, they called us for an old man, he was ninety, his daughter opens the door, says: he jerks himself off all day long, please help. but what can we do, we laughed and shrugged our shoulders. this guy is ninety, and here at twenty-five . . . .

dima says: she is, like, completely crazy, but they didn’t lock her up at an asylum, she, like, didn’t understand anything, came up to a policeman and grabbed him by the cock and looked him in the eyes, and he couldn’t do anything, even though all the passers-by were staring

lera says: today for breakfast I had two tomatoes and an egg, and the cock was erect! thank goodness the trunks are nylon, otherwise they would tear up

igor says: my brother’s cock is smaller than mine, and mine is longer and fatter

lena tells: I’m walking, and he turns and takes his cock out, I got scared and screamed, he ran away, and then I dreamt of his cock all night long

ira says: you know, galya is such a fool, she’d sell her own mother for a cock

so, like, this dude had a huge cock and no one would sleep with him. he went to a hospital and said, help me. there they say, all right, we’ll cure you, and put him in the hospital. in the evening he went for a walk down the hallway and saw a janitor mopping the floor, he took his cock out and fucked her, and she told him: so if I’m working class it’s okay to fuck me with a leg?

liza says: there was a soldier, his last name was govorov, he had a cock, I’d never seen another one like that, very big, once a woman came to their garrison and he fucked her on the garage roof, she screamed, and then they had to call the ambulance because he tore up everything inside her, after that he didn’t come close to women because he was a nice guy, but lucia slept with him a few times and everything was fine, she still pines for him, and he’s not from here, after he got discharged he went either to kalmykia or to the komi autonomous republic, I forget.

gosha says: that year I went on a business trip to do a poll, but I had no documents, so I had to crash at a shelter, and by my side a Kyrgyz guy on the next bed, and I can’t fall asleep, and he is jerking off under the sheets, and I remember how in our town they’d curse, "suck the cock of a dead Kyrgyz," and so I felt disgusted, especially since he was kind of dirty, but still interesting, I tell him: show me your cock, and be did, nothing special, it was quite ordinary, only small.

serafima says: and I read in a newspaper that one fool bit off her lover’s cock.

lena says: and I saw it in a movie, there a chick cut off her lover’s cock and walked around town with it, or maybe she ate it, I forget, I later saw another movie by the same director, there a chick slept with a monkey, I kept on waiting for them to show the monkey’s cock but they didn’t, perhaps this scene was cut.

(when the sun came up, everyone suddenly got very sleepy, but the new life was beginning, and one felt sorry to waste these minutes, even though the eyelids were heavy, you should just get over it, get over it, get over it)

igor says: I was in a bathhouse, I always feel awkward there because I’m afraid I’ll get a hard-on, and one dude, like, walks around like he’s something special because his cock is so big, he walks around waving it, even when we went outside for a smoke, everyone wrapped towels around their waists, and he didn’t.

misha says: and I once went to a bathhouse and there’s a really ancient guy there, forty years old or something, and he says, let me give you a massage, and then he grabbed me by the cock and said, you have such a big one.

(I don’t know how to behave in certain situations, because I’m afraid, I’m shy; as they say in books, I can open up the dark sides of my soul only on paper. they don’t publish me at all lately, I’ve quarreled with everyone, I don’t eat anything, I just smoke and drink water, this all started when they found out I had hiv, when I got into the hospital with diarrhea, just ordinary diarrhea, I had had something wrong to drink, then they do blood tests, then it was as if everyone went insane, I don’t want to talk about it, I want to leave this country, will you help me? will you take me with you? it doesn’t have to be someplace far, just anywhere)

kaiya says: I don’t know why igor is so rude to me, as if I had sprinkled salt on his cock.

raya says: in porn movies men have very large cocks, I like the movies with jeff stryker, and even not because he has a large cock but because his eyes are so piercing and sad, he must be so lonely, and I would know how to help him

igor says: when we were at the summer house, all the boys measured their cocks with a ruler, whose is the longest and the fattest, so, mine was the biggest

lucia says: we, like, had a little to drink, well, it was nice wine, from moldova, the bottle was, you know, wrapped in copper wire, and he then takes his cock out and looks me in the eye, I bent down, wanted to take it in my mouth, and then I saw crabs on his pubic hair, I got so sick, I puked right on his cock

(I didn’t tell anyone about my aids, I hid, and no one could understand why I was so afraid of sex, I said I was tired, that I was going through a difficult period in my life, that I needed to think about a lot of things, and then the rumors must have got here, and they started calling me, threatening to kill me, calling me a degenerate, and I have never done anything bad to anyone, then I saw "jeffrey," there everything ends well for him, and I thought, perhaps there’s hope for me too, but one of my girlfriends told me: don’t get your hopes up, it’s only there in america that they understand everything, here everything is rotten, everyone’s afraid for his own skin, and they couldn’t care less whom they humiliate, at whom they direct their malice)

one photographer photographed his own cock, decorated it in various ways, jerked off and took pictures with an automatic camera, and then organized an exhibition and wanted the tickets for it to be extremely expensive, and, you know, people didn’t spare money, some even came to see it several times, and he told me a story: I got an admirer who wanted to become my model, I looked at his cock, but it was somehow not beautiful, mine is more beautiful, so, I’m telling this because not everyone can become an art object

kosrya drew a cock as a cactus in a pot and gave it to me as a gift

roma was really shy about his cock, because he couldn’t get erect and the doctor told him that now everything was hopeless, and roma is only twenty-five, his whole life ahead of him, although it seems to me this is the solution for many problems.

ira says: at the dorm a guy came to visit her, he was, you know, slightly retarded, and she laughed, and he got undressed and started pestering her, and then she hit his cock with a slipper, threw his clothes out the window and pushed him out the door, and he ran with an erect cock out into the street, but there boys had already grabbed his clothes, so he walked around the courtyard with his cock still hard

lera says: and I slept with a black guy at the dorm, I was curious but also a little disgusted, because his cock was like some insect, although he wasn’t really black, he must have been an arab

tanya says: and one of my girlfriends told me that a black guy fucked her with such a large cock that later for three weeks she kept on looking under her skirt, thinking that something had remained there

(yesterday a letter came by e-mail: "you degenerate, may you croak, get the fuck out of this city," someone found my e-mail address, I never gave it out to strangers, so this must have been someone I know, who smiles to my face, pretends not to know, commiserates, and then—letters like this; I didn’t do anything, just changed my e-mail address, too bad I can’t leave, not because I don’t have the money, no, I’m just scared, where would I go, are they waiting for me there, no one needs me anywhere)

masha says: a cut cock was always a mystery to me, and once I saw it by accident and at first I didn’t understand that that’s what it was, and you know, it’s quite handy, and people also say it’s more hygienic

then everyone talked about the castrati for a long time, no one went for the essence of the problem, its historical and ideological underpinnings; the absence of the cock, the paradox of a conscious refusal of the cock—this is what worried those present, and this conversation gave many a tear-jerking itch somewhere inside, around the prostate

the castrati became a pretext for an even more intellectual conversation, the name of farinelli popped up, choir boys, holy fathers, numerous film characters, clark was resting because he always had morals and political correctness on his side

(I am writing this as it were from beyond the grave and therefore I believe I have a right to produce such a text, it is unlikely that it would shock someone out of indifference, as lyonya told me after glancing through "a different kind of love," I feel sorry for this man [the author], he lacked something in his life, I think an analogous thought would visit everyone while reading these lines and they’d be one hundred percent correct, because at the present moment I lack many things, first and foremost myself, the self I was before the illness)

(a person who cannot remain alone with his secret feels strange, the feeling becomes even stranger if this secret—against his will—is revealed to people unknown to him, today again there were threatening messages on my pager and I’m not even trying to change my number, because these retards unknown to me will find it out anyway, last night, when I went out to look at the fountains, they followed me, there were two of them, one wore a dracula mask, and the other the mask of a rabid piglet, it seemed to me they had axes in their hands, they waited for me to attack them, to make the first move, so that they could cut me up—to keep their conscience clean, for even the last scoundrel cannot always muster the courage to attack first-out of cowardice, he cannot attack from behind—out of a false sense of nobility, scoundrels cannot be noble, you’d say, and you’d be mistaken, just like I used to be mistaken)

(one must love and respect murderers, at the very least because they have already done what you personally could never muster the courage to do, even if you wanted to very much, sometimes this is a feeling provoked by other feelings—seeking revenge, taking offence, succumbing to madness—a lump somewhere in the aorta, and you want to grab an axe or a pistol, so that you’d never see again, so that he wouldn’t even writhe, but then you get over this condition, it passes, and then you don’t even recall it, they say it is this unrealized desire that gives birth to cancerous cells, as if the mythical murderous energy did not disappear; not having killed, you in the end kill yourself, from the inside, at the most vulnerable point)

liza says: my younger brother asked me, where is the fish’s cock, and I ask him, how do you know such things, and he, my friend antosha taught me at the kindergarten

lilya says: I pine for a large cock

it’s time to stop, it’s clear to everyone that this story about the cock was conceived so that you’d read what I had put in the parentheses, a trap, a decoy, you would read about cocks, laugh, spit, and definitely read through to the end (I know how corrupt you are), and you will at least glance through the most important parts, my laments

I have never been to another country, everyone thinks I like spain, but in reality that’s not the case, I don’t like spain or any other country, all these magical eldorados, I like the dirtiest, emptiest country by my clones

everyone says I couldn’t live with my clone—perhaps, but I’d know what he would say, what he would think, how he’d like to come, and he wouldn’t suffer because I’m sick

perhaps the murderers want to get hold of my hair, I started noticing that my hair is falling out, it disappears somewhere without a trace, this means someone needs it, but I’m going bald, I need it myself

last night the murderers fouled my doorstep, they shat on it

I always dreamt of taking my own cock in the mouth, but I can’t bend this hard, although I’ve seen other people doing it in movies, and in a dream, in a haunting dream, I blow myself, and once I even saw my own face

lilya, rita, ira, igor and roma stopped by yesterday, they are not murderers, but they broke the portable tape recorder with which I taped their conversations, they tried choking me, but how can you choke a corpse, they only managed to squeeze all my saliva out, they were all covered by saliva, my infected saliva, they broke my tape recorder, and there was a lot of stuff there about cocks, a lot of funny and disgusting stuff, but it isn’t difficult to invent things about cocks

the pretext and reason for my illness is my cock

it again stinks of shit, the murderers again shat on my doorstep

the murderer is easy to recognize, by the glistening eyes, the bulging veins on his arms, and a bright red head

I’m also a murderer, I want to sleep with everyone who doesn’t know

no one knows anything

the old woman from vasilievsky never died, she just couldn’t, and vanya the officer, a military pilot, unlearned how to write, now he can only write the word cock, but you know, the military guys don’t need anything else

the old woman from vasilievsky, although she possessed an antique clock, was unhappy, and this unhappiness was portrayed on her face, there were no bruises and scratches on it, but how can I explain it to you, you have never traveled on a diesel train, there, between the carriages, those guys have cancerous cells in their eye pupils

I took the murderers’ feces to a clinic to get tested, there were parasite eggs and coagulated blood in them

I have unlearned how to cry: this is also a symptom of my illness, nothing scary, I’ll survive somehow, crying is not shitting

you’ll help me, just a one-way ticket, into a dirty country, in a third-class carriage, to wash my cock

be careful: this text is infected, better not touch the letters with your tongue

during the day I work as a newspaper editor, and at night I’m a stripper, not for money, but for the image: a russian writer, sick with aids, earns money to pay for his medicine by dancing in calvin klein underpants

the murderers are my clones, I know what they think, what they want, how they come, they have my face, especially in profile, only the clothes are different, I hope they are not from the thrift store, but expensive, not polyester, the axe needs to be sharpened, tomorrow I must get tested, I can’t leave, nothing is allowed, nothing

I dedicate this text to Rita Meklina, whom I do not actually know, and to all the other young women with the right souls, who could be mine


Aleksandr Anashevich was born and lives in the city of Voronezh in central Russia, where he works as a newspaper editor. He has been recognized as one of the most important poetic voices to emerge in Russia since the collapse of the Soviet Union. His first collection of poems, So Many Traps, was published in 1997, followed by The Siren Signals and Unpleasant Movie. He has been shortlisted for the prestigious Andrei Bely Prize, and in late 2002 a volume of his selected writings, Fragments of a Kingdom, came out in the Andrei Bely Prize book series. His poems and plays have also appeared in RISK, Vavilon, Mitin zhurnal, and other literary periodicals, and they have been widely anthologized both in Russia, and abroad. In English, a selection appeared in the anthology Crossing Centuries: The New Generation in Russian Poetry.

Vitaly Chernetsky is an associate professor of German and Ukrainian languages at Miami University. He also pursues research on Ukrainian cinema and is engaged in numerous literary translation projects focused on contemporary Ukrainian and Russian poetry.

Original text: Vavilon, no. 8. ARGORISK/Tver':: Kolonna, Moscow: 2001.

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