Poems

Dana Rice: ‘A Visit to the Esoteric Laundromat’

Prologue: I’m sitting in Saint Petersburg on my postgraduate study abroad semester when my landlord texts me in Russian. After two months of living here, you’d think I’d understand the language better but at this point all I seem to have learnt are “No, I don’t want to pay for a shopping bag” and every colourful swear word ever mentioned in a Leningrad song. Since the message uses neither, I run it through Google Translate. Apparently, Valentina wants to take the curtain from my soul and clean it because it’s dirty. You see, the words for “soul” (душа) and “shower”…

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