Thursday, January 23, 2014

Anna Akhmatova

It is your lynx eyes, Asia,
That spied out something in me,
Teased out something hidden,
And born of the silence,
And tedious, and difficult,
Like the great noon heat in Termez.
Just as if forememory all flowed
Into consciousness like scorching lava,
Just as if I drank my own sobs
From someone else's  palms.


Anna Akhmatova

Amedeo Modigliani, portrait of Anna Akhmatova


When I read this translated poem as a teen, it seized me such an with utter delight, terror and longing, that I have never quite recovered.

A friend of mine once created this torn-paper portrait of Akhmatova. The original was ruined; all I have left is this photo.

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