War is the Quietest Cry for Help

Domesticity disguising warfare in Margaryta Golovchenko's poignant poem

by Margaryta Golovchenko


Refused by air to act as glass white rosebushes
snow globe in a corner, content being shear-proof. Take notes
apple tree, no guarantees even from the only sleepless
sugar producer. When stripped naked
the skin is paper-thin, worthy of that photograph
from last summer when soup at the beach seemed the most
rebellious idea of the moment. No complaints there
where the gazing general just above the mahogany table in the hall
would disagree, complain of the unsuitability
of the gilded frame and how it confines his achievements.
The gamekeeper’s wife declared an invasion on the nomads in the tree
that morning over biscuits which sounded
like she has been practicing with the yellowed papers in the archive
section, finally able to make out the curve of the c.
With considerable attention you might make out the faint
whiff of ambergris as it attempts to remind of myth
before the untrained eye confuses it for the gene of the balsam fir tree.

–description of a warlord’s villa in a tourist brochure,
in pencil warning
‘beware the carpet stain’


Margaryta Golovchenko | @Margaryta505

Margaryta is an undergrad student at the University of Toronto, and serves as the editor for the journals Half Mystic and The Spectatorial. Her debut poetry chapbook ‘Miso Mermaid’ is forthcoming this autumn from words(on)pages press. She is an avid tea drinker and when not maneuvering around her mountain of to-be-read books she can be found sharing her (mis)adventures on Twitter.