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The Literary Groong - 11/01/2001

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	MR. KALFAYAN'S POEM

	By Y. Stephan Bulbulian


	The entire history of Armenians
	In Fresno rests at the Ararat Cemetery;
	The good people, famous personalities,
	Unscrupulous con-artists, notorious characters.
	On Sunday morning, there is no direct sun light
	Shining on the memorial of the 8,000 residents
	Of the City of Chungoush, perished in 1915,
	Or the mass grave of the unknown orphans.
	There is no surprise at the young ages,
	Nearly forgotten names and familiar faces
	In the oval pictures on the gravestones.
	The old Lincoln stops on the narrow path
	Between the veterans of foreign wars
	And all of the Armenian survivors, now dead.
	In disarray, his shoes wet from the dew,
	He assembles roses of red and yellow
	From his own garden, in a large glass jar.
	Arranging the flowers, he places them
	In two impressive marble stones,
	One for he and his wife,
	The other for his parents;
	The stepfather, who gave him his name.
	His stone marriage-bed is half-empty.
	In the oval picture his hair is black.
	There is no date, only the inscription:
	"to-where, from-where?"
	"My brother is buried in a pauper's grave",
	He told us, "in Switzerland. My two sisters in Cairo."
	He breaks the glass jar and cuts his hand.
	I assemble the pieces and rush them away.
	"This is all I have," he says.
	Tears pour forth from reddened slits
	Like sweat from a day's labor.
	"I come here twice a week".


	Fowler, CA.


Y. Stephan Bulbulian writes poems about Armenian life in the Diaspora,
farming, heritage, and life in Fowler, California.  Mr.  Bulbulian's
poetry has appeared in The Armenian Weekly, Asbarez, Nor Hayastan, and
Hye Sharzoom.  His poems have been anthologized in Vintage, 1994 and
Vintage 1995, published by the Poets Of The Vineyard. Mr.  Bulbulian
was recently anthologized in Armenian Town, 6 Fresno Armenian-American
Poets, published by the William Saroyan Society.  His poetry is
regularly featured in Ararat, a quarterly literary journal published
by the Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU).  Mr. Bulbulian was
the 1990 AGBU Art Award winner for poetry.  He is a member of the
Fresno Poets Association, the New England Poetry Club, Poets Of The
Vineyard and resides in Fowler, CA.


Copyright   2001 Y. Stephan Bulbulian


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