You’re Russian? No, I am contagious.
My bio consists of missing pages.
I play a drunkard on the stage.
But yes, that’s where I came of age.
You’re Loseff? No, I am a Lifschutz,
the schmuck who always fell for stiff chicks
and pretty honors students smeared
with ink-stains, here and over here.
You’re human? No, I am a sliver,
a cracked Dutch tile out of context,
a weir, a mill, a rustic river –
God only knows what cometh next.
(Translation © Constantine Rusanov)
G.S. Smith's translation and the original are here.