:: Article

The Poem Brut #2 – Heartbeat, Footclick and Machine Gun Vocalises

By Volodymyr Bilyk.

memo:
“T” – machinegun
“.” – footclick
“:” – heartbeat
“-” – pause

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Poet’s note:

One of the national guards said that shootouts are actually the easiest and the calmest part of the “war”. And it’s also the part that we commonly refer to as “war”. But these action-bits are preceeded and suceeded by the moments of waiting for the right moment, scouting, plannin’, gettin’ ready or just waitin’ for somethin’ to happen anytime…

I have an idea for a war-doc – in which nothing will really happen – just landscapes, “moon”-landscapes, soldiers hangin’ out, listening to literaly every sound – from a birdsong to Grad-firing, gazing at sky – looking for drones, being bored, being tired and waitin’, waitin’, waitin’… a kind of Bela Tarr film – without any explanatory voice-over, without prominent dialogue – just momemnts of “being” (kinda like Loznitsa’s Maidan) – and then – hell breaks loose. Real hell.

I heard a recording of more or less ordinary (as i was told) shootout. It was about 10-11 minutes – it had this weird ambience – you hear the gunshots, someones heavy breathin’, lots of sounds of footsteps – here and there, back and forth, someones countin’ somethin’, more gunshots – and then – nothing. Sonic void. Not a digital silence, but a recorded one. That silence was happening there. And then – it was over. And I had this overwhelming feeling of panic – almost disorienting – at first I thought “is this it? or not? what happened next?” – but then i realized the completeness of that document – and i thought – “what if try to recreate it in a written word?”…

Volodymyr-Bilyk

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Volodymyr Bilyk is a writer, translator and occasionally visual artist. His works appeared in The New Post-Literate, A-Minor magazine, REM magazine, Cormac McCarthy’s Dead Typewriter, The Otolith, Altered Scale, Ex-Ex-Lit, Truck, Maintenant, Apparent Magnitude, The Gin Mill Cowboy and many others. He is co-editor of Extreme Writing Community.

First published in 3:AM Magazine: Thursday, April 9th, 2015.