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Photo of the artist Tism

Russia

Tism


I stiffed in Byelorussia;
Blew out in Chernigov;
There's a pub in Lithuania
That I got kicked out of -
No gigs in Vladivostok,
No work in Atbasar;
Not movin' all that much stock
In Kazakhstanskaya.
Booed off in Azerbaijan,
Same thing in Serpukhov;
No encore in Astraskhan,
Sumy and ol' Khar'kov.
Oh, I use to hear my records
In the Nugayskaya Steppe!
Ukraine's fields like golden cords!
Frost of Chukot Khrebet!
Like Lenin, I've been buried
Above ground, in a tomb;
Roadie - less, I've hurried
Through Kursk's retreating gloom;
The winding streets of Moscow,
The chimmneys of Zhdnov:
Fare thee well, for I must go,
Leave all you remind me of.
My tongue knows every syllable
Of Semipalatinsk,
And loves the monosyllables
Of Kursk and Ket and Minsk.
The Taz, the Par, the Kas, the Om -
Rivers I cross alone;
It's like that Bobby Dylan song:
I'm not wanted in my home.
In Kheta, past the Arctic line,
I'm an anacronism.
I was a good idea at the time -
Just like communism.
From Nargan Mar to Mangyshlak,
The last Soviet star!
I can't even be exiled back
To old Siberia.
There's only one place left to sing,
One land to hear my pleas:
The place that will accept anything
If it's from overseas -
I'll go the only place left to roam
As Russia splits asunder:
Goodbye to the Kremlin's dome!
I'm number one Down Under.

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