The Siege of Leningrad began in 1941 and lasted 872 days, resulting in the most destructive blockade in history. Already shaken by Stalin’s purges of the ’30s, Leningrad withstood the siege at a great human cost. Air Raid
takes us through the archives of memory and literature in this city of death. Polina Barskova’s polyphonic poems stretch the boundaries of poetic form—this is what we’re left with after poetry’s failure to save nations and people: post-death, post-Holocaust, post-Siege, post-revolution; post-marriage and post-literature. How does language react to such a catastrophe? How does a poet find language for what cannot be told? This new translation of a leading contemporary Russian poet confronts English excavating its muteness, stutter, and curse.