Friday, October 25, 2013

another Akhmatova poem


Tallest, suavest of us, why Memory, 
forcing you to appear from the past, pass 
down a train, swaying, to find me 
clear profiled through the window-glass? 
Angel or bird? How we debated! 
The poet thought you like translucent straw. 
Through dark lashes, your eyes, Georgian, 
looking, with gentleness, on it all. 
Shade, forgive. Blue skies, Flaubert, 
Insomnia, late-blooming lilac flower, 
bring you, and the magnificence of the year, 
nineteen-thirteen, to mind, and your 
unclouded temperate afternoon, memory 
difficult for me now – Oh, shade!

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