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Poem About a Crow: a work by the killed Ukrainian writer Victoria Amelina


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Photographic portrait of Victoria Amelina

Victoria Amelina, a Ukrainian writer and poet, died on July 1 from wounds sustained from the Russian missile strike in Kramatorsk last week on a restaurant she was in with some colleagues.

Here's one of her poems, inspired by her work interviewing women who lived through Russian occupation.

Poem About a Crow

In a barren springtime field

Stands a woman dressed in black

Crying her sisters’ names

Like a bird in the empty sky

She’ll cry them all out of herself


The one that flew away too soon

The one that had begged to die

The one that couldn’t stop death

The one that has not stopped waiting

The one that has not stopped believing

The one that still grieves in silence


She’ll cry them all into the ground

As though sowing the field with pain


And from pain and the names of women

Her new sisters will grow from the earth

And again will sing joyfully of life


But what about her, the crow?


She will stay in this field forever

Because only this cry of hers

Holds all those swallows in the air


Do you hear how she calls

Each one by her name?

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