Like the head of a gavel on a block,

his knife snaps through a wall of flesh

and frees a leg which then he champions.

We watch him televised through a window.

A queue drools from the shop’s mouth

everyone meandering to his podium

where he parcels legs and sheets of ham

and gifts them to his people like relics.

I used to venture here alone on Sundays.

A smile would stretch across his face

as he’d hand me beef draped in paper.

Then he’d tap my head like a reception bell

and tell me ‘send regards to your mom’,

which I would carry on my shoulders home.

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Wow I liked this. As someone living in Berlin but who would like to spend some time in Russia (maybe even live there - I'm learning Russian to prepare for this), this has made me contemplate what I value in a system. I'm highly individualistic and skeptical of bureaucracy, so I would prefer that I be involved as little as possible with the government, but I know that paying taxes (even for the GEZ which I have little use for) is for the greater good.

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