The Moscow Poetry File

The Moscow Poetry File

by John Huey
The Moscow Poetry File

The Moscow Poetry File

by John Huey


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In 2004 an American businessman was invited to Moscow to explain a new technical development to the Government there. Little did he know that this would the beginning of life altering process leading to the love he had always sought but never found as well as a way back to a career as an artist that had escaped him. Between 2004 and 2013 he discovered not only the perils of life in Moscow but also something of the beauty and humanity of its people. Despite many personal struggles he, along with the woman who would later become his wife, overcame many of the issues inherent in an intergenerational and cross-cultural relationship and made it, literally, and sometimes nearly at the cost of their lives, to the other side. Many tragic events in Russia framed his time there but the most profound personal impact was felt by the murder, in October 2006, of his neighbor at Lesnaya 8, the journalist Anna Politkovskaya. The clearly political Politkovskaya killing sounded the death knell for a free press in Russia and the ever-tightening grip of Putin's regime on all aspects of life there. Though most Russians support Putin both the author and his wife were deeply moved by the few who struggle against him and were proud to know some of the artists and intellectuals emblematic of what little true resistance remains there. A love for these few is expressed in many of the poems in the book. Be it on the sidewalk on Tverskaya Street, in the Metro, Restaurants or Clubs, 'The Moscow Poetry File' gives the reader, in poetic form, a true insight into life there and the danger as well as the excitement inherent in virtually every aspect of daily life. The book is also a great love story and depicts the struggle of two people finding their way to each other despite enormous odds. This struggle, and the triumph of love and mutual respect over adversity is an underlying theme in the book that is depicted with telling effect. 'The Moscow Poetry File', which has been anthologized in the 'Temptation' anthology published by Lost Tower in London, is a compelling view of a dynamic place at a tragic and pivotal time. With "all things Russian" much in the news since the advent of Trump this detailed American perspective, from the ground level, is a unique study, in verse, of a society and culture still mysterious and perplexing to the Western eye.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781635343359
Publisher: Finishing Line Press
Publication date: 11/17/2017
Pages: 168
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.39(d)

About the Author

John Huey's student work of the 60's-70's was influenced by teachers in Vermont such as John Irving at Windham College and William Meredith at Bread Loaf. After many years of involvement in an ongoing international business career that involved travel to over 90 different countries (including an intense, sometimes perilous, engagement with Russia between 2004-2013) he returned to writing poetry in 2011. Recently he has had poems presented in two issues of Poetry Quarterly and in the Temptation anthology published in London by Lost Tower Publications. Work has also appeared in Leannan Magazine, Sein und Werden, at In Between Hangovers, Red Wolf Journal, The Lost River Review and Perfume River Poetry Review. A poem regarding the Trump inauguration will appear shortly in an anthology to be published by Poets for Sanctuary (formerly known as Poets Against Trump). The Moscow Poetry File is his first full length publication. His second full length book of poems, The Far Visible, was completed in 2016 and is now under review for publication. In 2017 Huey is in the final stages of a yet to be titled, 70 longer form poem book, involving the years 1966-1972. He was a 'charter member' of that generation and has not been satisfied with much of what he has seen in print and on film about that often trivialized and misunderstood era. This new work is an attempt to take another look at those years and to hopefully contribute to the ongoing study of those times. In 2018, he is planning to start work in earnest on his first novel, The Lost Andy's, and he is looking forward to that adventure. Further information is available on the web at

Table of Contents

Early Days: The Girls At The Center Of The City

The Moment Being What You Make It 1

Which Highway? 2

Short Coats and High Heels 3

Snowy Evening 4

Night Train 5

Road Stop 6

Third Ring Road 2:45 AM 7

Great Novgorod Summer 2005 8

Libertines of the Golden Ring 10

Strippers 11

Miramistin 13

Sex 15

Altered States 16

Lust 18

Dark Underground 19

Truck Driver Girls 21

Looks, Stares, Time 22

Equivalence 23

Progression: Her, Herself, Alone

A Fire in Winter 27

A Walk in the Snow 28

Beauty 29

Arrival 30

The Bread of the Gorbushka Bazaar 31

Night Watch 32

At the Hall of the Pioneers 33

When Deadly Night is At Your Door 35

The Girl in the Tunnel 37

Vipers in the Hallway 39

The Streets Rise Up At Dawn 41

Moscow River Drive 5:00 AM 42


East of Moscow – The Woods 45

A Place With No Top 46

Moscow River Zen 47

The Towers That Rise From the River 49

A Pulse in the Skyline 51

Horizon to Horizon 52

Boulevard Ring – Twilight 2007 53

New Years Day – The Boys in the Square 54

Crossing the Garden Ring 56

A Journey, a Bridge, a Town 57

Volga Crossing 58

Spend It All 59

Voices in a Foreign Room 61

Run of the Town 62

This Is Still a Moscow Story 63

Politics, History, Art

Anna 67

Motorcade 68

And You Thought You Found Your Place With God? 70

The Siloviki 72

Lubyanka 73

Leon 74

Red Factory 76

The Thread 78

Painter 80

“Leosha” 81

Maximalism 82

Mayakovski 83

Yesenin in the Lobby Bar of the Angleterre Hotel 85

The Broken City: Disorder in the New Town

Moscow Minus 21 89

Jealousy 90

Sleep 91

Trans-Siberian Blue 92

Twilight of the Patriarch 93

Adventurers 94

When You Know Just What You Are 95

Nights in Calm Reflection 96

Traces 97

May the River of Life Flow Through You 98

Nighttime and the Idealist 99

The Light in the Eye 100

On the Nature and Occasion of Sin 101

Night Lounge Delhi 102

Lives of Magic 103

Outlaws 104

Cost 105

Images in Another Night 106

Fate 107

My Lost Poem 108

Open City 109

Job One 110

Home At Last

Will You Walk This Way With Me Again? 113

The Window (Moscow Slight Return) 114

The Streets near Tverskaya 115

When You Are Young and Filled With Wonder 116

Fidelity and the Greedy Eye 117

The Picture 118

Coda: Last Visit To A Dark Town

Into the Grey, Moscow, February 2013 121

The Order of the Line/Embassy Dawn 9:00AM 123

Noontime Dom Knigi 125

Gulag 127

The Door of the Ukrainian Cafe/ 129

Driving Naked 130

Borders 132

The Old Traveler 133

Three Years Out – Moscow – Day and Night 134

Glossary 137

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