May 01, 2016

Poetry Smackdown

Maria Zakharova, Russia’s foreign ministry spokesperson, staged a poetry slam of sorts with writer Dmitry Bykov after he published a lyrical comment about the initiative announced by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu: to launch a national soccer league. This poetic exchange, however, is more about Zakharova’s verbal style than the substance of the matter.

My calm I have barely recovered,
I’ve got the chills, such joy I feel:
Lavrov and Shoigu have discovered
Our country’s national idea!
Just like Brazil’s! The noble cause is
Running, playing, let’s get moving!
We’ll get men out of their garages,
With soccer we’ll be folks inducing.
For us, there’ll be no Mundial
(Not for them to say, but still…)
That’s fine, no harm to our morale,
There’s no one here that’s gonna’ kill.
Your sanctions serve just to embolden,
We see no threat from such extremes,
And here at home we plan on holding,
A championship of courtyard teams.
The wheels of time have brought us back here:
Our glamour was for show, no more.
The courtyard, kids! It all belongs there:
The MID spokesperson, culture, war.


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