Back to Vladimir Orlov's Artist PageTo the Artist's Page     Back to the Unlikely Stories home pageTo our home page
The Red Square in Red-Dawn DreamsTo Vladimir Orlov's next piece

The Dead Truck on Russian Fields

They  waited  for  carts
near  the  local  prison
where  "the  enemies  of  the  people"
were  kept,  their  souls  and  bodies
envying  the  fate  of  the  dead  calves,
mercifully  killed  at  once,  rather  than
after  hours,  days,  weeks,  years  of  torture
and  overpowering  abuse, death  appearing
a  tempting  morsel,  a  gift  of  the  Communist
heaven  where  Stalin  claimed  to  reign.
First  thing  in  the  morning
those   dead  human  calves  sadly  still  alive
were  being  driven  to  Siberia's  snow-hazed  fields,
to  the  "bright  future"  labor  camps
to  manufacture  those  very  chains
which  served  to  pull  together  the  monolithic
Evil  Empire  of  Dead  Calves.

Nobody  grouped  downwind  of  the  slaughtered  calves,
'cause  nobody  could  stand  the  wretched  stench
of  this  Communist   "achievement  and  success",
'cause  nobody  could  risk  becoming  a  human  being,
not  a  calf,  ready  to  be  driven  from
one  department  of  the  great  butchery
of  the  Evil  Empire  to  another -
sometimes  a  thousand  miles  away,
sometimes  in  your  neighbor's  room,
who  informed  on  you  to  the  secret  police,
for  you  to  wonder  what  made  your  friend  and  neighbor
do that  but  a  hope  to  get  your  room  for  himself -
as  an  award  for  allegiance  soon  to  be  torn
from  him  by  another  eager  informer.

And  those  who  died  on  the  way  were  envied
by  the  millions  of  dead  calves  still  alive.
The  shepherds  were  always  esteemed,  even  though
everyone    yearned  to  see  them  in  the  calves'  ranks,
welcome  them  aboard,   beaten  up  and  fettered
by  the  new  generations  of  shepherds  and  butchers
all  ready  to  add  up  to  the  long  Stalin's  list,
as  the  pendulum  swings  yet  again.

To the top of this pageTo the top of this page