Sasha Sokolov

“You want to leave the moat, to go back to the room; you’re already turning and trying to find the door, covered with fake leather, in the steep wall of the moat, but the master succeeds in grabbing your hand and, looking straight in your eyes, says: Your assignment: describe the jaw of a crocodile, the tongue of a hummingbird, the steeple of the New Maiden Convent, a shoot of bird cherry, the bend of the Lethe, the tail of any village dog, a night of love, mirages over hot asphalt, the bright midday in Berezov, the face of a flibbertigibbet, the garden of hell, compare the termite colony to the forest anthill, the sad fate of leaves to the serenade of a Venetian gondolier, and transform a cicada into a butterfly, turn rain into hail, day into night, give us today our daily bread, make a sibilant out of a vowel, prevent the crash of the train whose engineer is asleep, repeat the thirteenth labor of Hercules, give a smoke to a passerby, explain youth and old age, sing a song about a bluebird bringing water in the morn, turn your face to the north, to the Novgorodian barbicans, and then describe how the doorman knows it is snowing outside, if he sits in the foyer all day, talks to the elevator operator, and does not look out the window because there is no window; yes, tell how exactly, and in addition, plant in your orchard a white rose of the winds, show it to the teacher Pavel and, if he likes it, give the white rose to the teacher Pavel, pin the flower to his cowboy shirt or to his dacha hat, bring joy to the man who departed to nowhere, make your old pedagogue—a joker, a clown, and a wind-chaser—happy.”


Sasha Sokolov, A School for Fools
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A School for Fools A School for Fools by Sasha Sokolov
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