William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

The Old Language

A Lesson to Remember

A Lesson to Remember

The following little story, which reads like a fairy tale — and would be, if every word of it were not true — is an old favorite of mine. Written in 2002 as part of No Time to Cut My Hair, it subsequently appeared in Ararat Quarterly in 2003; in Armenian translation in The Old Language in 2005; and in The Armenian Reporter in 2008. The accompanying image is from […]

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The Old Language

The grapes are ready, two bunches pick’d, and none denied the robin. The hand’s unsteady, the spirit’s quick, the moment’s soon forgotten. August 19, 2019   The Old Language The old man stood near the edge of the road, waiting for his grandson to get home from school. Seeing the bright-yellow bus come in his direction always made his heart glad. Soon the bus would stop in front of the […]

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Perpetrator, subject, and witness all in one.
Impulse, mood, and countless other things I’ll never know:
The image arrives much as a poem — which is to say,
It was, and remains, beyond my control.

Alone

Alone

Self-Portrait, August 15, 2011
The Old Language: A New Revised Edition in Armenian,
translated by Samvel Mkrtchyan,
S & H Project, 2013

Alone