Americans at Lenin’s Tomb


Americans at Lenin’s Tomb 

Shrouded with dark gray reverence, 

Lenin’s private mausoleum

Looms on Red Square.

To approach his tomb-throne,

We descended and ascended

Grayish-black marble stairs.

Cold stone cradles

Lenin’s waxed form sealed


(His own flesh consumed by now.)

He lies in state

A living statement dead.


In wax

For the people, to the people,

Not of the people. 

We accidentally laughed

Descending the slabs of gray marble,

Not disrespectfully, but

Engaged in other conversation.

A stalwart soldier hushed us with stern face.

One by one

We filed by Lenin’s figure


With hundreds of onlookers,

But our shoulders


An eerie flash of horror.

Lenin’s Plexiglas-covered casket

Reflected our own faces

As we walked by.

And the stoic soldier was right;

It really wasn’t funny.

It was dead serious.


  1. Thanks, Tara! I wish you had been with us. BTW, we were with Syble, Olen, Wayne, and Monty. It was Monty who was cracking everyone up right before we passed by the casket.

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