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This poem is taken from PN Review 261, Volume 48 Number 1, September - October 2021.

I am a suburb (translated by Donald Gardner) Maria Barnas
Translated by Donald Gardner

I Am a Suburb

Stood by the bus stop with a felt pen/ In this suburban hell/ And in the distance a police car/ To break the suburban spell/ Let’s take a ride, and run with the dogs tonight/ In Suburbia/ You can’t hide, run with the dogs tonight/ In Suburbia

Pet Shop Boys, 1986

Only the dogs run here and pant
to get to the edge of the suburb
that dissolves when you think you’re close

they almost caught me in passing
yes I know the tale of the horizon.
It comes from the shrubs where Kim sits

and smokes or from behind the bus shelter
where the assailant loiters. Or from Ivan’s
cellar he lets no one enter.

We don’t know for sure if he exists.
With a bucket on his head he’s a stupefied
superhero. What does he see that makes him pitch

like a ship in a stormy painting?
The dogs run to string all the suburbs

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