пускай с моею мордою
   печатных книжек нет,
  вот эта подпись гордая
есть мой автопортрет



рукописи не горят!.. ...в интернете ...   

head header

December 5.

The backache gets acuter at walking, especially in the morning, more so when walking downhill.

When I entered Milk Factory Director's office, Valyo was chanting on the phone at the top of his lungs to inform the caller that the town had run out of flour, and Bread Factory down here stopped working four days ago.

Then he rang off and in a lower tone told me that there was no milk either.

Fortunately, when I stepped out of the Milk Factory gate, Sashic was passing by in his car, he pulled up and told me to hop in for an uphill lift to the down-town area.

There I walked to the 2-storied Editorial Building where Ms. Stella, the paper's Responsible Secretary, presented me with two articles to be translated into Russian.

Albeit signed with different names they were remarkably alike—Patriotic Rattle of Pebbles in a Dented Oil-Drum Rolled Over All Bumps and Ruts and Holes.

I went at them (2 articles) hammer and tongs to render into Russian their double din.

Though (technically) an oddball, I'm allowed to work at the desk of a renderer on her pregnancy leave.

Wagrum, a reporter at Russian Section, fluttered in, perched onto his desk, and disclosed his utter surprise at the crying shame of dire procrastination with my inauguration to Renderer position.

Some stupid bureaucratic tricks! A childish monkey business!!!

And he took wing again.

A sudden burst of a protracted salvo made me startle and triggered off my usual physiological response.

It feels like a tingling surge of warmth in my belly and chest in sync to a ghostly grip at the back of my neck—splashclutch!—and on reaching the utmost limit — the grip slowly slackens and dissolves in inaudible foamy hiss of receding warmth-wave.

<!-- ...so too many words, buddy. Put it straight, 'I got scared stiff and felt all funny – butterflies in my stomach.' -->

The salvo was to style the funeral of the four youths killed by a single shellburst in their dugout in Krkjan, the northwestern commanding height, Azeri part of the town.

When I came home from the paper, Sego and Gaia, Valyo's kids, were on a visit to our place.

Sahtik and I played cards with them, the childish game of 'believe-not believe'.

Roozahna—still kept under punitive restrictions after the latest of her pranks—was not allowed to participate and bravely took her medicine sticking around in the attitude of a scornful on-looker.

The little party cheered up with the arrival of Carina, Sashic's wife, with their boy and girl plus a present for our Ahshaut – some footwear hand-me-downs from her son Tiggo.

All went on as merrily as the marriage bells until an hour later when Sashic pulled up and honked close by our communicational window to pick up all of our guests.

At 10 p.m. Sahtik and the kids started for the Shelter, a former tailor's in the ground floor of a dingy two-storied apartment block.

The room got popular in the neighborhood because its only window is not facing the heights from where they shoot AlazanALAZAN —
     a missile contrivance for destroying hailstorm clouds which was easily converted into artillery weapon in the initial stages of the Karabakh war 1991-1994.
missiles at the town.

About dozen of women with two or three kids each spend nights in it.

In the darkness I saw my family over to Shelter carrying Ahshaut in my arms.

It was a talkless walk under the snappy din of shooting out in Krkjan beneath the indifferent gleam of the stars above.

Our steps were as slow as the sleepy breathing of the child bundled in his blanket and pressed to my chest with some bitter mute butterflies in my heart.

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