True Stories from the Future


"True Stories from the Future" is the winner of Boone's Dock Press's 2011 Uncle Walt's contest.  33 pages.  Perfect bind.  Cover image by the author.

This poet who sets himself the task of “writing poetry/ in languages yet unknown” peoples his poems with a cunning Pharaoh, the Supervisor of Unique Thinks and Dids, and a continent-owning Count. A. Molotkov creates a future in which the Truth Chamber Chairman takes a holiday, giving liars exactly two weeks to do their work, a world in which questions transmogrify themselves by sprouting leaves. Who could resist this surreal, often eerily funny voice with a penchant for fable? After enjoining the reader, himself, anyone to “tell me another story/ in that language/ I don’t know,” he offers this wish, this blessing: “may your story remain/ untranslatable// may it be/ endless.”

Paulann Petersen
Oregon Poet Laureate

The poems in Anatoly Molotkov's True Stories from the Future are given a razor-sharp edge by his unmistakably Slavic wit—sometimes sardonic, but more often playful. He is attentive to every word and its echoes, as in the perfect little lyric "How," where he pauses to unpack "belong" as "be long" and "amuse" as "a muse," while never interrupting the melody of the whole. Reading these finely polished poems is to journey with an author alive to every moment, whether in a brightly lit present, among stories from a forgotten past, or deciphering the mysterious kabbala of future worlds. This is time travel in unexplored country, with the perfect tour guide as a companion.

Paul Merchant
poet, William Stafford Archivist

I made the final choice because I see true vision in A. Molotkov’s work. It is sparse, yet complex and progressive. It is very different from my usual choices in aesthetics, but I believe that it communicates a complete message which allows the reader to have a uniquely personal experience. There is a genuine depth in this work that I believe transcends the words on the page to accomplish something far greater - something beyond language, and perhaps something we will understand only as we might understand the future: as a bright, open canvas before us.

Kempton B. Van Hoff
Publisher, Boone's Dock Press


The following wonderful magazines were very kind to publish selections from "True Stories from the Future":

Calliope Nerve

Rusty Truck



A. Molotkov