Jun 052011

Here is a melancholy little love poem, in the Frank O’Hara mode, from the Victoria, British Columbia, poet, Slavic Studies student, Chernobyl expert, blogger, and shootist, Brianna Berbenuik, known affectionately in Numéro Cinq circles as AK Berbenuik for her exciting adventures with Glocks and AK47s. The author photograph is appropriately and unseasonably wintry; the poem reminds dg of many saying-goodbye-with-boxes moments in his wintry past.


es muss sein? es muss nicht sein, i tell you

By Brianna Berbenuik


this is our great romance.

of sucking salt from your fingertips
feeling the pressure of the padded ends
on my tongue.

i collect moments with you
like you collect little sisters

like dolls, your girls are
worthless without their packaging—
easy to throw away,
and begin the search again

everything is half-way.
that night, i thought you might kiss me.
it was foolish, but i am sorry i didn’t.
maybe next time—

“i am stuck in traffic in a taxi cab
which is typical, and not just of modern life”

i am laying on your floor surrounded by
banker’s boxes, like architecture
everything in stacks; ready for relocation.

sometimes we keep ourselves this way.

—Brianna Berbenuik

  5 Responses to “es muss sein? es muss nicht sein, i tell you: Poem — Brianna Berbenuik”

  1. Incredible work as usual, B.

  2. Wowski! One of those poems i wish I’d written.

  3. A strong wise poem and a truly wonderful photo. B, it’s hard to imagine you ever losing yourself. And don’t let us lose you — I look forward to seeing more of your work on NC.

  4. Aw thanks so much to all of you – it is so awesome to have that support for my work (as cheesy as it sounds I mean it!)

  5. Good to see your work on NC again, Brianna! Your talents are panoramic. I love the closing line here, “sometimes we keep ourselves this way.”

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