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The Literary Groong - 01/28/2006

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	SHIFTING THE SUN

	By Diana Der Hovanessian


	When your father dies, say the Irish,
	you lose your umbrella against bad weather.
	May his sun be your light, say the Armenians.

	When your father dies, say the Welsh,
	you sink afoot deeper into the earth.
	May you inherit his light, say the Armenians.

	When your father dies, say the Canadians,
	you run out of excuses.
	May you inherit his sun, say the Armenians.

	When your father dies, say the French,
	you become your own father.
	May you stand up in his light, say the Armenians.

	When your father dies, say the Indians,
	he comes back as the thunder.
	May you inherit his light, say the Armenians.

	When your father dies, say the Russians,
	he takes your childhood with him.
	May you inherit his light, say the Armenians.

	When your father dies, say the English,
	you join his club you vowed you wouldn't.
	May you inherit his sun, say the Armenians.

	When your father dies, say the Armenians,
	your sun shifts forever.
	And you walk in his light.


--
Diana Der Hovanessian is a Fulbright professor of American literature
at Yerevan State University in 1994 and 1999, she is author of 17
books and has published in American Scholar, Poetry, Harvard Review,
Nation, Paris Review, New Republic, and her poetry is regularly
published in the Christian Science Monitor. She has awards from the
Columbia Translation Center, P.E.N., Writers Union of America, and the
Writers Union of Armenia.

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