Convoy Envoy

Whenever on a trip to Vladivostok
I like to sip vodka in a comfy tavern
just down the street from my hotel.
For a small tip the waiter ushers me
to a booth in view of the television
and there I catch up on local events

Tonight though the place is packed
with joyous patrons, some prancing
cossack-style upon the sturdy tables,
others hugging they care not whom.
What is happening? I yell in broken
russian. Bahkmut is fallen! they reply

Though like tolstoy largely a pacifist
I’m not one to shirk a good carouse
and that night I quaffed many toasts
to the brave lads who comb the city
for hidden snipers and hot tripwires,
singing loud their praises till sunrise

Why would a proud canuck do that?
To the strains of a vintage balalaika
I explain to my newfound comrades
that shame drove me hither and yon,
seeking lands where empire fumbles,
victory songs heard in other tongues

Douglas Smith, formerly a teacher of Anthropology at York University, is a homeopathic physician.and author of several books on alternative medicine. It is claimed (although Dissident Voice has no proof of this!) that Doug and his partner grow the best garlic in Haliburton County. Read other articles by Douglas.