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Poets are Present: Katherine E. Young

Poets are Present is a poetry residency in conjunction with David Ives’s adaptation of The Metromaniacs. As part of this unique theatre/poetry exchange, the Shakespeare Theatre Company is proud to host more than 30 D.C.-area poets in the theatre’s lobby. Throughout the run, we will share with you the poems that this residency inspired our guests to write. Visit our 
Poets are Present
 page to see a list of upcoming poets.Young_Katherine

Katherine E. Young is the author of Day of the Border Guards (U of Arkansas 2014 Miller Williams Arkansas Poetry Prize finalist), named one of Beltway Poetry’s “Top Ten New Books of 2014,” and translator of Two Poems by Inna Kabysh (Artist’s Proof Editions).  Her poems appear in Prairie Schooner, The Iowa Review, Shenandoah,and others; her translations from the Russian won third place in the 2011 Brodsky-Spender Prize competition and were long-listed for the 2014 PEN/International New Voices Award.


All the World’s a Stage

For Boris Nemtsov, murdered in Moscow on February 27, 2015.

By Katherine E. Young


This strange, eventful history’s bewitched:
the plot thickens, its mystery increases.
a body lies in Moscow on a bridge,
and Ninevah’s winged bull is smashed to pieces.

The plot thickens, its mystery increases.
Villains from Central Casting thrust their swords
towards Ninevah’s winged bull – it lies in pieces –
while “patriots” slay priests to please great lords.

Villains from Central Casting lift their swords
to cleave the body’s bonds, unwavering.
A patriot is slain to please great lords:
sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything,

his body falls, its purpose wavering.
Like Ninevah stone, it shatters. The world’s bewitched:
sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything,
his body lies in Moscow on a bridge.


Poets Are Present.  February 28, 2015

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