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Most people think that shadows follow, precede or surround beings or objects. The truth is that they also surround words, ideas, desires, deeds, impulses and memories.
— Elie Wiesel

If my memories could have only slept
in Yerevan; if I would have never
faced the sky’s worrisome slackness, windswept
spirits swept between mountains and further
rocks; if the swifts and skylarks had only
saved me; then telling you of what happened
would be utterable. My skull’s memory
feels like an oak-beam ripped in two, opened
by force. Hesitantly I step forward.
I want to tell you how this all began
but pain is potent and drives everything
away. There is no magic, no numbered
spell to ease this. No. I left Yerevan
and went north, which was all my undoing.