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…and from this union
the centaurs are born.

41.827721, 75.219213

Kirghizistan photography © philippe roguet

‘How you tremble, Manas.’

‘I’m not trembling. I shall stand up in a minute.
I – am frozen.
I am frozen in the face of the Gods.
Frozen in the face of Death.
Frozen in the face of Now.
And as I swung my sword once more from horseback, on the Nara River,
Swung, a – a lameness seized my arm.
Whether I strike, or I am struck, it’s all the same.
The sword thrust through the throat just sits there.
Puto, a sea is heaving beneath the land on which I walk!
A fire is burning beneath the land on which I walk.
No victory is of any use.’

Kirghizistan photography © philippe roguet
Kirghizistan photography © philippe roguet
Kirghizistan photography © philippe roguet

‘And Manas does not see me, Manas speaks to the wall,
Manas does not turn to the window
To see that Udaipur exists.’

Kirghizistan photography © philippe roguet

‘And I am lost. And can no longer see the sun.
The lovely sun has been torn away from me.
The elephants I tame are trumpeting in my groves.
Their keepers stand there and I don’t come and I don’t know them.

Kirghizistan photography © philippe roguet

I cry: Ah, uuih, uuih,
I, Manas, son of the king,
I the victor back from the salty wastes,
I cry: Uuih, I will go to the dead,
I will go from here to let them tear me, grind me,
Will go to sorrow, sorrow, rather than still live, still live.
Rather than still see the sun, see the sweet beloved sun,
The sun so fervently beloved,
Oh Puto, the sun that I have loved so tenderly.’

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‘Oh I know you, my child. Come, Manas, to the King.
I shall help you, here I am.
Now take your helmet, here’s your armour.’

Kirghizistan photography © philippe roguet
and that's where my friends live...

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