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This poem is taken from PN Review 178, Volume 34 Number 2, November - December 2007.

Three Poems Arto Payaslian

Parajanov Presses His Cheek Against His Prison Cell's Wall

There is dust in the sunlight
floating differently each time
in its own silence. We do not bother
one another.
                    The years cram
into my heart like collages
made from dried pomegranate peels,
earth from my yard in Tiflis
and blue plastic candy wrappers
that I used to keep after sucking
down the sweets from my mother's hand.
                        I check my pockets for them now.

This wall is strong and not my enemy.
It is doing what it is told. See how
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