Sunday, April 7, 2013

Poetry Month

Mohammed Bek Hadjetlache
by Carl Sandburg

This Mohammedan colonel from the Caucasus yells with his
     voice and wigwags with his arms.
The interpreter translates, "I was a friend of Kornilov, he
     asks me what to do and I tell him."
A stub of a man, this Mohammedan colonel … a projectile
     shape … a bald head hammered …
"Does he fight or do they put him in a cannon and shoot
     him at the enemy?"
This fly-by-night, this bull-roarer who knows everybody.
     "I write forty books, history of Islam, history of Europe,
     true religion, scientific farming, I am the Roosevelt of the
     Caucasus, I go to America and ride horses in the moving
     pictures for $500,000, you get $50,000 …"
"I have 30,000 acres in the Caucasus, I have a stove factory
     in Petrograd the bolsheviks take from me, I am an old
     friend of the Czar, I am an old family friend of
     Clemenceau …"
These hands strangled three fellow workers for the czarist
     restoration, took their money, sent them in sacks to a
     river bottom … and scandalized Stockholm with his gang
     of strangler women.
Mid-sea strangler hands rise before me illustrating a wish,
     "I ride horses for the moving pictures in America,
     $500,000, and you get ten per cent …"
This rider of fugitive dawns.…

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