90: Reading Dostoyevsky at Seventeen by Dante Di Stefano

In those days, my dreams always changed titles

before they were finished and I wanted

only to love in that insane tortured way

of poor dear Dmitri Karamazov.

Suddenly, I was speaking the language

of lapdog and samovar. This is

the ballroom, the barracks, the firing squad.

This is the old monk with the beard of bees.

This is the orange lullaby the moon

of the moon will sing you when it’s grieving.

This is the province you escape by train,

fleeing heavy snow and eternal elk.

This is the part where I take your hand in

my hand and I tell you we are burning.


The author’s work can be found in the volume, Love is a Stone Endlessly in Flight: Poems.

Think about how the poem made you feel. Do you remember your early literary and cinematic obsessions? Did you ever attempt to change your whole personality around these newfound worlds, but find it hard to stick, because who you are is hard to change so dramatically?

May you live out another beautiful poem in the collection of your life today, and we’ll see you again tomorrow.

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