Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0022030, Sun, 25 Sep 2011 12:48:54 +0300

Nabokov Hotel
At the VN museum today I made the acquaintance of the poet Sergey Stratanovsky. I first read a few poems of his, and loved them, some ten years ago, but I never suspected that a diminutive, Verger-like* bibliographer at the Public Library whom I knew since 1988 was the legendary author of "Геростраты."** The author of seven books, Stratanovsky gave me his first collection of poetry (Stikhi, 1993). Here is the poem in which Lolita and the Nabokov Hotel are mentioned:

Ночью, в Набоков-отеле
школьницу, полую Лолу
В номер на птицу-постель
змей-господин завлечёт
Змей о семи головах:
первая жрёт насекомых
Гонгорой бредит вторая
Третья целует в пупок,
в полудетские груди Лолиту
Зверь о семи головах
Веки закрыла седьмая:
молится Богу впотьмах


I hope that Jeff Edmunds who earlier translated a poem by Victor Krivulin (Stratanovsky's late friend) will also translate this one.

*Philippe Verger, the librarian at Ardis

**"The Herostrati" (1970-71)

Alexey Sklyarenko

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