Saturday, July 01, 2006

Leo Hamalian: Suite for Shushanik III

Click to hear Suite for Shushanik III read by Lola Koundakjian.

This poem was written by Leo Hamalian, in the voice of painter Arshile Gorky (Vosdanik Adoian).


Shushanik is standing by the stove.
Her eyes darken and stare out.
I ask, "What's for dessert, ma?"
Dessert? "Son, for dessert
there is the tonir
where we can sleep
and dream of paklava."
Her mouth smiles sadly.
"That's what's for desert."
Vartoosh clears the table
and we all lie down on the floor,
mother and sister and brother
huddled together under our rug
while Zango* whimpers in his sleep.

This poem has appeared in the Summer 1997 issue of Ararat Quarterly, and in the Summer 2004 tribute to Leo Hamalian (1920-2004).

*Zango was the name of Adoian's dog.

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