Shaman and Poe

The Village Street

In these rapid, restless shadows,
Once I walked at eventide,
When a gentle, silent maiden,
Walked in beauty at my side.
She alone there walked beside me
All in beauty, like a bride.
Pallidly the moon was shining
On the dewy meadows nigh;
On the silvery, silent rivers,
On the mountains far and high,--
On the ocean's star-lit waters,
Where the winds a-weary die.
Slowly, silently we wandered
From the open cottage door,
Underneath the elm's long branches
To the pavement bending o'er;
Underneath the mossy willow
And the dying sycamore.

With the myriad stars in beauty
All bedight, the heavens were seen,
Radiant hopes were bright around me,
Like the light of stars serene;
Like the mellow midnight splendor
Of the Night's irradiate queen.
Audibly the elm-leaves whispered
Peaceful, pleasant melodies,
Like the distant murmured music
Of unquiet, lovely seas;
While the winds were hushed in slumber
In the fragrant flowers and trees.
Wondrous and unwonted beauty
Still adorning all did seem,
While I told my love in fables
'Neath the willows by the stream;
Would the heart have kept unspoken
Love that was its rarest dream!

Instantly away we wandered
In the shadowy twilight tide,
She, the silent, scornful maiden,
Walking calmly at my side,
With a step serene and stately,
All in beauty, all in pride.

Vacantly I walked beside her.
On the earth mine eyes were cast;
Swift and keen there came unto me
Bitter memories of the past--
On me, like the rain in Autumn
On the dead leaves, cold and fast.

Underneath the elms we parted,
By the lowly cottage door;
One brief word alone was uttered--
Never on our lips before;
And away I walked forlornly,
Broken-hearted evermore.

Slowly, silently I loitered,
Homeward, in the night, alone;
Sudden anguish bound my spirit,
That my youth had never known;
Wild unrest, like that which cometh
When the Night's first dream hath flown.
Now, to me the elm-leaves whisper
Mad, discordant melodies,
And keen melodies like shadows
Haunt the moaning willow trees,
And the sycamores with laughter
Mock me in the nightly breeze.

Sad and pale the Autumn moonlight
Through the sighing foliage streams;
And each morning, midnight shadow,
Shadow of my sorrow seems;
Strive, O heart, forget thine idol!
And, O soul, forget thy dreams! 

The Village Street by Edgar Allan Poe
Photographs by Evgeniy Shaman

What I want

I want to live beyond your scorn...
to be touched in those places only you can touch.

What I Want

I want
I want
I want a look that does not make fun of my lungs
I want a spring that has not matured
I want to share a Spring
I am the queen of my heart thanks love
I want when I wake up sleepers participant
I want a spring that does not want the summer
And a spring that takes me by surprise
To soothe my moods
I want the blood which is not without injury
And injuries not blinded by the blood
I want
I want
I want the darkness to reveal themselves to me
And a light that I do not discover
I want to exile a way that the return does not cross
I want a free Iliad Odyssey
I want poems that go beyond the shame of surprise
In consumption and other poems
That nestle in the shadow of words
I want a word that takes care of my silence
and peace which are equivalent excuse and pity
I want a question that does not take my answers
I want a father who does not forget me and a father that I forget
I want
I want
I want a race between freedom and sighs
I want to celebrate the kings who lost their crown
I want birds that do not jeopardize their wings
In the hermitage of the grain
I want a language that does not disturb the future
I want a polished stone in the silence of the well
I want to laugh at the roots of despotism branches
I want a howl that will shake up the wolves
I want high roofs to small towns
I want to thunder that does not deal kindly
In a flash of lightning and not rush into the clouds
I want
I want
I want to hold the ashes of a fire
I want a word that sounds collide
I want a long winding attracts dreams
I want all Arab women who hope to love
And men loyal to their man's name
I want
I want
I want the streets like ships and space
Where my soul can remember of my flesh
Abdul Rahman al-Touhmazi 1946 (Samarra, Iraq)

Photography by, Evgeniy Shaman

it only takes two

"ENOUGH ! we're tired, my heart and I.
We sit beside the headstone thus,
And wish that name were carved for us.
The moss reprints more tenderly
The hard types of the mason's knife,
As heaven's sweet life renews earth's life
With which we're tired, my heart and I."

by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
photography 'Morning Train'  by  Evgeniy Shaman

I years had been from home,

Evgeniy Shaman

photography by Evgeniy Shaman

I years had been from home,
And now, before the door,
I dared not open, lest a face
I never saw before

Stare vacant into mine
And ask my business there.
My business,--just a life I left,
Was such still dwelling there?

I fumbled at my nerve,
I scanned the windows near;
The silence like an ocean rolled,
And broke against my ear.

I laughed a wooden laugh
That I could fear a door,
Who danger and the dead had faced,
But never quaked before.

I fitted to the latch
My hand, with trembling care,
Lest back the awful door should spring,
And leave me standing there.

I moved my fingers off
As cautiously as glass,
And held my ears, and like a thief
Fled gasping from the house.                                                                 

                                                                         Emily Dickinson                                                                    


erase by Evgeniy Shaman


To have lost even the why or the what for –
to dream and to wake with the weight
of even the mechanical why even the mechanical wherefore –

the primitive one-string cello,
bent low playing a threnody, thread, theme I know,
into the night as I wake heaving it, hearing it –

like a chorus dissolving
not only sadness, sea,
but past sadness
past past sadness

now that I live so close to your sound, sea,
even at night wake to listen for you –
close to your smell
close and often to your salvage
your changing sand and rock shelf, sea,
lost generations
lost progenitors
past sadness, sea

© 2009, Joan Metelerkamp
From: Burnt Offering
Publisher: Modjaji Books, Cape Town, 2009
ISBN: 9780980272949