Heart of Kamchatka

No, there will be no catastrophe over Kamchatka!
Birds happily gather their nests
And in our untrammeled rivers
May the king salmon go freely to its spawning grounds

The rivers threw forth waves in protest
Kutkh, great raven, they besought.
A bulldozer plowed into the heart of Kamchatka
And Mother-earth winced, distraught.

Volcanoes erupted fire over the settlement,
My city was darkened in ash,
Many gargantuans came to life in an instant,
In a huge explosion and flash.

Plant life charred, forever in shock,
Nothing here would begin to grow.
Only species of ancient bedrock
Count as something left to know.

All's been discussed, chewed over and over,
Glittering deposits lure.
Valuable gold, four-leafed clover,
The future not a whit more secure.

Desolation, destruction, barren rock,
Chaos, Kamchatka submerged,
Tragedy greater--more bitter than hemlock,
Catastrophe, life itself purged.

The rivers threw forth waves in protest...

Nelya Suzdalova